Every step leads her deeper into danger…
Eden Miller has her life arranged exactly as she wants it–until a reunion with her high school BFFs places her in the middle of a turf war with a ruthless prison gang, their terrorist allies, and the hunters tracking them. Her every move draws her deeper into the danger surrounding Ty Bladen and his team of terror fighters, but his seductive charm and engaging smile make her believe his promises of protection.
A secret is a dangerous thing…
When the terrorists Ty Bladen is tracking infiltrate his remote ranch in Wyoming, he learns the past he buried cannot be so easily escaped. Though he’s recovering from a bullet wound he received in Afghanistan and is hunted by an unseen enemy, he knows he can’t leave Eden alone to face the danger swirling around her, danger he and his team have brought to her–even if the has to risk letting her near his frozen heart. But when she learns his terrible secret, will she stay or will she run?
This book made my heart ache for Ty. To have had to go through everything he did as a child and yet be the man he was with a soft heart just makes you hurt for him. To see him find his other half in Eden was beautiful.
Eden is in town for a reunion with her high school friends when they cross paths with incredibly horrible men. As she works to be there for her friends she ends up meeting Ty who pushes all her buttons. She’s very hesitant to trust anyone but when the bad men end up showing up and causing trouble in her real life she is forced to be back in his company. She’s quick to believe the worst about his intentions but when she finally lets him in we get a glimpse of how strongly she actually feels about him. She’s going to be the one who will always be there for him and support him even when he won’t believe in himself.
Ty broke my heart a few times in this one. Please be ready with tissues as you will need them when you find out what happened to him as a child. This explains so much about his treatment of Eden and also of letting people close. He doesn’t believe himself worthy of something real and good but this is a man who deserves every bit of faith and love that Eden gives him. He’s such a strong man and I adored him even when he was being stubborn. I don’t want to give away much more but trust me when I say you will cheer when some people get what they deserve although they really deserved much more hell than they got.
Elaine has written an incredibly complex set of characters for this series and I cannot wait until we get more glimpses of all of them. I truly thank her for the chance to read this as I adored it.
He’ll protect her with every vicious bone in his body.
During her ten years at the prestigious Waywroth Academy, Sera Miller clung to a strict code of propriety to shield herself from rumors that she isn’t an orphan at all. She’s a bastard. Now she wishes she had never allowed her friends to talk her into snooping into the mysterious source of her tuition.
Her benefactor isn’t the unknown father she dreamed of one day meeting, but Fletcher Thomas—underworld tycoon, gambling den owner, and a man so dangerously mesmerizing that he could spark the scandal Sera has worked so hard to avoid.
Fletcher is only two steps away from leaving the life of crime he inherited from his father. First he plans to join an aboveboard railroad consortium, then claim the one thing his ill-gotten gains have kept safe all these years—Sera.
With every wicked caress, Sera fights harder to remember society’s rules and reject the painful memories his touch resurrects. Accepting Fletcher’s love means accepting her past—a risk too great for a woman who has always lived in the shadows. No matter how safe she feels in his arms.
Warning: This book contains a do-gooder heroine, an accidentally charming hero with tendencies toward caveman-itis, inappropriate household décor and fabulous sex against a wall.
I will warn you I tend to be a bit biased when it comes to Lorelei’s books whether they are just her or her collaboration with another author that results in the naughtiness of Katie Porter. I did receive this one from Lorelei but as always she doesn’t ask me to write nice reviews or honestly even to review the books. I just love them enough to let you know that this is a really nice book full of snark, heat and enough love to make you smile.
Sera has always held out hope that the benefactor paying for her schooling is actually her father taking care of a bastard daughter. She’s held out hope that she isn’t an orphan but in one moment finds out the man paying her bills is a bit of a rogue. He runs gambling halls and other scandalous enterprises which of course will not do. She sets out to find out why he is paying for her to make her way but ends up getting more than she bargained for when she also gets persuaded (hmmm more like persuades him) to put things to rights in his household so he can live more like a respectable gentleman than rogue. She’s uptight, judgmental and very stuck in appearances to society but under all this is a woman who has a heart of gold with a streak of rebelliousness that fits our hero perfectly.
Fletcher… sigh… Fletcher… He’s not an easy man to pin down. I mean we have a man who operates on the dark side of society due to his birthright. We have a man that takes care of his people and wants to better their positions. We have a man who is such a sweetheart to Sera even to the point of holding himself away from her as to not taint her with his current enterprises. He wants her so much not only for the air of respectability but ultimately for the woman she is under all the prim and proper. He’s attempting to finally come out from under his dad’s reputation and make his world in the respectable parts of society but has his best laid plans thrown for a bit of a loop when Sera takes matters in to her own hands. These two are definitely meant for one another and the snark that goes between them was fun to read and enjoy.
There is a bit of heat in this but not too much to override the sweet story of two people finding something precious that makes them perfectly suited for their times and environment. They are a fun pair to read and I thank Lorelei for giving me the chance to do so.
As always… She can give me more any time as I will be happy to head back to this period and little group she has created.
I have to admit I’m a huge Ruthie Knox fan. I mean she just has a way to get you to love these damaged heroes and their equally messed up heroines. In this case we have a heroine who is the epitome of a good girl that wants to be bad and a hero who is a good guy convinced that he’s unworthy of such a good girl. The insecurities both main characters have made this a quick lovely novella that had a nice amount of heat but a huge amount of heart.
Amber has had fantasies about the contractor, Tony, working on the community center when a tornado warning forces both of them to take cover in the basement of the building. The dark spooky basement of their building. While they wait out the storm she helps Tony work through his issues of being in dark enclosed spaces and they discover a mutual attraction burning between them. After they emerge from the basement they discover her car has been damaged by the storm and he being the good guy he is offers to take her home. You’ll love his inner dialogue as he tries to do what is right by her even though he wants her so badly it makes him want more than he thought he could ever give. You’ll be happy to note that she gets to be taught how to misbehave quite thoroughly (huge grin).
Tony has a lot of issues to work through but he doesn’t hide from Amber nor does he try to do like some other romance heroes and blame his issues on the heroine. He knows what he needs to do but is afraid to take that step and acknowledge that he isn’t his past but has grown up to be an incredibly sweet, nice man. I loved this novella and cannot recommend it enough to those who love humor, heat plus heart in a quick read.
Special thanks to Ruthie Knox, NetGalley.com and the wonderful people at Random House (Sue.. you know you are wonderfully amazing) for giving me the chance to continue my fan girl love for Ruthie’s work in exchange for my honest review.
This was another case of me getting lucky and having an author send me a hot read. I knew going in that it would be hot as the writing team of Katie Porter never disappoints… They know how to write very strong characters that go after what they want and need.
This is a hot friends to lovers story where you just want two very stubborn people to let down their walls and admit that what they need is standing right in front of them. Dima and Lizzie have been competitive ballroom dance partners for years. They know each other better than anyone else will probably ever be able to but even with all of this intimacy they have never been able to open up to one another about their true feelings. I mean they are friends who live, train, and travel together but neither wants to ruin the friendship they have to find out if they could be more. Lizzie gets hurt and is unable to compete which leaves Dima at loose ends. He decides to try out working/dancing at a local club to keep himself in the game. He learns that while he enjoyed ballroom this new style of dancing and performing fulfills something deep inside him. He gets the rush of performing but also gets to express his creativity outside of the rigid rules ballroom entails.
Lizzie is very shocked to see her partner wasting his talents on this new style of perfuming and isn’t shy about telling him that she doesn’t feel it is the right thing. She reacts strongly but it is more driven by fear of losing him to this new life than being truly offended about the dance. She wants him for more than a friend but is so frightened of losing her other half she can’t take the risk. She tries to push him by making moves on the bartender but Dima knows it is fear talking and not what she really wants. Even while with the bartender he knows she is thinking of him and imagining him there. I loved how he pushed her almost to the breaking point but was willing to take that risk to have the woman who holds his heart and soul. The scenes with Paul were incredibly hot but at the core of this story is a wonderful friendship that morphs in to the thing everyone I think wants…. A partner in everything….
Again.. thanks to Katie Porter for giving me the chance to read this with no expectation of a review let alone a glowing one… Ya’ll can send me anything… (Hint Hint)
I haven’t done a lot of series reviews but I am going to in this case… I have to say I loved this series and really hope that we get to see more stories set in this world as I am addicted.
A few months ago I saw a tweet from an author asking if anyone wanted to try her series out and if so to let her know as she would put us in touch with her publicist. I proceeded to wander out to the web and find out more about the series before I responded and found the premise to be intriguing although not completely a style I have read a lot recently. I went ahead and said sure I’d love to try the series out and waited patiently to hear back. I was luck enough to get a response and waited eagerly to hear from them. Well it took a bit but I finally got the books this month and I must say … I adored them. Mind you these are not easy, flowery reads… there is blood, death, torture of both a mental and physical kind… but under all that there is heart… heat… love… respect… and a true sense of family bonds during a time of immense change and sorrow. You do need to read these in order as they build off one another and while you may not get grabbed early in the first book please keep reading as the story grabs you along with the characters. You want these people to find happiness and security even during the times you want to strangle them.
We start the series off with a bang, Max has received a call from her witch, Giselle, telling her to go check something out in a nearby city. You see Max is a Shadowblade, a creation of magic and humanity that makes her unable to handle any light from the sun even the moon. She’s strong, able to stand immense amounts of pain, and due to the magic also able to heal from wounds that would kill mortals. Max is driven by a sense of revenge in the early parts of the story and even though she is sworn to Giselle she would love nothing more than to kill the woman she once loved like a sister. She feels immensely betrayed by Giselle’s turning her in to a Shadowblade even though it is truly the core of her being. Max is strong… loyal… bitter… compassionate and above all else reckless. She doesn’t always think before she acts which makes her incredibly dangerous as you never quite know what is coming next from her. I liked seeing her strength but what I most enjoyed was her weaknesses…
This book moves at a fairly quick pace but it doesn’t seem to suffer from the normal dump tons of data on you without having a story. You get drawn in to the chess-match between Giselle and Max, Alexander and his witch, Max and Alexander… well heck between Max and the rest of the world. Change is coming to the world and it brings horrible consequences to everyone not just the magical world.
Great start to a series and trust me you want to keep reading… there is quite a bit of tension between Max and Alex but the story is mainly about the world and the hell that is about to be unleashed.
When we left the last book Giselle and Max have come to an uneasy truce as the destruction the Guardians are unleashing causes more destruction to what Max realizes is her home and family than revenge will ever be worth. Does she trust Giselle… No… but at the same time she starts to understand why Giselle did what she did. She still feels betrayed but the need to protect her home and family means more to her than her need for revenge. I respected her for this but she still has a ways to go before she really becomes whole again.
Max has been granted a boon by the being she calls Scooter to go bring her family back to Horngate for protection. She’s determined to do this on her own but is forced in to taking Alexander who isn’t completely comfortable with his desires for her or his place in this new reality. He’s a Prime and finding himself sort of serving under someone other than just a witch does grate on him but mainly not knowing what his place is in this coven is taking a toll. He’s also wanting Max to admit she has feelings for him or at least be willing to open the door up to him to try to see what they have between them. He’s a good man but at a bit of a loss right now.
Max and Alexander learn a lot about each other on this trip and seeing him be there for her when the worst sort of betrayal hit her was wonderful to see. She needs someone to truly back her up and accept her for her… he does give this to her even though at times it doesn’t seem that way. She fights for her family and really realizes what it means to be a family in this book. It isn’t always about blood but more about heart and compassion. She grew up quite a bit in this one but still makes rash decisions that can come back to haunt her. I found myself being more and more drawn in to the world and for this I thank the author.
We start this book with Max and Alex still in limbo but this book pulls everyone apart… Max is now having to help Scooter get back parts of himself in another realm while Alex is trying to keep it together and save Horngate from a birthing Fury.
This book has it all.. death… destruction… love… angst… action… I swear your head will be turning repeatedly as you try to keep up with all the moving parts but at the core we are still watching Max figure out who she is and what she can do She’s also brought to her knees by realizing what exactly drives her and it isn’t what she always thought. She does things without thought but at the core she is driven by a need to protect those who cannot protect themselves either due to being weaker or due to being slaves as she once was. I like her core of strength and in this book she needs it more than before. She is driven to the edge of her own limits and in one case almost permanently removed from the equation. I loved watching her fight to be free and to free Scooter from his chains. She is someone that I would probably want to kill 90% of the time but would want at my back and as my friend due to her loyalty.
Alex… sigh… poor tortured Alex. He gets put through the wringer many times in this series and this book was hard on him from a personal perspective but also from the standpoint of finding his place. He does step up and protect Horngate from a sense of obligation to Max but you also start to sense that this is now his home in more ways than just a place to stay. He’s putting down roots and it scares him to his core as he isn’t sure exactly what he means to Max or to the others. This is an incredibly strong man who has been through hell but even when he almost goes feral manages to come to peace with his Prime and step in to lead what is now his… I liked watching him get control back and felt that he deserved so much more from Max than he ended up getting. I wanted to just hurt both of them while understanding why we are getting tortured by the author. This one will break your heart quite a few times but man is it worth the ride.
This one will be the hardest to review as I don’t want to give anything away to followers of the series. We get a ton of questions answered along with seeing some major changes in the characters we know and love.
Max is back and is still reeling from things that happened in Shadow City. She and Alex are spending time together in the bedroom but things just don’t seem to be moving forward from anything other than a sexual standpoint. Max still has a ton of issues and she just hasn’t let him in yet. It pushed a lot of buttons for me watching them both hurting but stick with it as what you truly have to work for at times is exactly what you need. If something is easy to have and hold it might not be worth it.
Horngate is now being threatened by extremists who believe that witchcraft is causing the hell on earth that the Guardians are unleashing. The foe they meet is hiding as a religious leader but in reality is a witch with help from a source that had me shaking my head. This is a painful story to get through from both an emotional standpoint and a mental one as there are a lot of innocents being killed/tortured in the name of “God” and watching everyone see/deal with this was just hard. Of course Max does what she does best and that is go in with both guns blazing no matter what the cost is to her or to the people around her. I love this about her but hate it as much as I love it… She really does begin to piss you off but the ending is what I wanted to see although I really hope we get more.
Ok.. go read this series… I know I tend to review more romance novels on this site than anything else but this UF series is so worth a try as it will give you a romance, action, love, family and a sense of home that a lot of other series just can’t seem to match. I loved Max and Alex plus all the supporting cast that you cheer for and cry for when the time comes. I just have to say I truly hate that it took me so long to find this series and I really hope we get to see more from this world.
Thanks again to Diana Pharaoh Francis and to the publicity team at Simon Schuster/Pocket Books for giving me the chance to read these wonderful stories.
While this wasn’t a fully original plot line I did enjoy the story. If you like the whole older wealthy male with a dark tortured past… younger female with her own troubles and angst… then this is for you.
Damien Stark is an incredibly wealthy, sexy man who has many secrets and needs to be in complete control. He’s a bit closed off to everyone around him but for some reason Nikki gets under his skin and he has to possess her. He’s definitely interesting and I truly am looking forward to more of this series just to see more of him. I liked how he went for what he wanted but at the same time felt that he did or bought things for her that fit her and not just the way he wanted her. He did seem to truly see her for who she was behind the mask she was taught to use.
Nikki… now unlike other series that have this same sort of tone… this heroine does have some experience being in the real world and isn’t afraid of living but instead uses a mask to hide behind because of serious issues as a child. I liked her ability to stand up to Damien and felt that this pairing has the potential to be a real partnership unlike some of the others. She’s got her own issues that she works through but he does help her face her demons and gives her the strength to fight. I liked her spunk and her sass but I also loved her heart. She does wear it on her sleeve but I think if push came to shove she would do fine standing on her own two feet without him. Their scenes together were hot and relatable from the sense of what both characters seemed to need at the time. The light bondage was appropriate and the bit of spanking was humorous as well as steamy.
I’m ready for more of this series as I think Julie has a way with words and characters that is refreshing in a plot line that has become a bit stale.
Thanks to NetGalley.com and Random House for letting me read this in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have to say thank you to all my Twitter friends who had read this and made me really really want it. I was lucky enough to be one of the winners that Edie picked out and got my greedy little hands on this early. I must say how can you go wrong with an ex-nun who gets shot by the hero the first time she meets him… Ok.. It was a mistake but…
Moira is enjoying her morning ritual of walking in a clearing near her house when a strange man rises out of nowhere with a gun cocked and pointed at her head. She isn’t a fainting type of woman so stands up to him and puts him in his place. After this momentary distraction he melts back in to the forest and she continues her walk until she hears a noise and feels something sting her ear. In a bit of shock she realizes she’s been shot and instead of fainting, gets pissed. Yeah this mystery man shot her but then finding out he also shot her friend just pisses her off even more. She’s got her own problems as the reason she renounced her vows and moved to the wild west becomes clear as the book continues. I really liked her and loved watching how strong she was in the face of horrible things but also how even with their less than perfect first meeting she never felt like she wasn’t safe with our hero. She is a very strong woman and doesn’t like anyone to tell her what to do no matter why they are doing so. It was refreshing to see such a strong woman emerge from the hell she was put through in Boston.
When we first meet Del he’s a bit of a rough soul. I mean his job is to hunt and kill Indians who are terrorizing and killing settlers. He’s a tortured soul and as you get to see more of his history your heart will bleed for him. He carries the weight of the world on his shoulders even though he doesn’t deserve all the rep he has. He’s labeled as a deserter/turncoat by those who don’t know the real story and by others who just know his current profession a cold killer. He is torn up by shooting Moira and as he quickly learns the shooting of an innocent Indian. As he gets to know the town better and all the people in it he’s torn by need to move on (he’s not the family kind) before he hurts Moira or staying to put down roots with a woman he is finding it harder to resist every moment he spends with her. What he does when he finds out her past was heartwarming and watching the true man come out and shine was wonderful.
The two of them share a great sense of humor and banter with one another which was refreshing but I would have loved to have this be a bit longer cause I wanted more of them together. Yeah so I’m greedy… *heh*
Thanks again to Edie Harris for giving me my copy and I can’t recommend grabbing this enough. Pre-order it today….
Please help me welcome Anne Calhoun to the blog… This short story was by far one of the best I have read this Christmas season and I cannot tell you loud enough to go read this… Anne has been nice enough to answer some questions so join me in learning more about her…
Q&A With Anne Calhoun
Q: Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.
A: Writer who holds citizenship in 3 countries on 2 continents yet lives in a flyover state for love. Wife. Mother. Loves Frye boots, wool, and character more than wit.
Q: Your current release is BREATH ON EMBERS. Deets!
A: It’s the story of a FDNY lieutenant whose relationship with a widow goes from hot to white-hot and intensely emotional over the holidays.
Q: What three words best describe Thea?
A: Trapped. Fighting. Passionate.
Q: What three activities would Ronan never engage in?
A: Coercion. Quitting. Smarmy superiority.
Q: What is the one accessory Thea won’t leave the house without?
A: Her scarf. It’s practically illegal to leave the house without one in NYC. 😉 Ronan wears them, too.
Q: What are your greatest creative influences?
A: Music, although what I’m listening to may not play a role in the current WIP. I read a ton of nonfiction, sometimes for research, sometimes for curiosity. Travel.
Q: What three things do you need in order to write?
A: MacBook Air. Quiet (or the steady background noise of a coffee shop). An idea of what I need to write that day.
Q: What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?
A: Dennis Lehane’s Shutter Island. I’ve read Rainbow Rowell’s two 2013 releases – Eleanor and Park, and Fangirl – and they are wildly different and both incredible.
Q: If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?
A: To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Q: What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
A: Read. Knit. Take yoga class. Walk the dog. I’ve got an eight-year-old boy so much of my non-writing time is occupied with homework, having friends over, activities he’s in. I also like to talk to (or at) my husband. 😉
Q: How can readers connect with you?
A: Annecalhoun.com has an email form. I’m on Twitter as @annecalhoun, and Facebook. I also have a fan group on Goodreads.
Now for more about the story that has quite a few of us in awe of her talent….
Christmas is the perfect time for Firefighter Ronan O’Rourke to take things to the next level with his sexually adventurous girlfriend. He knows she has feelings for him—and he’s sure of his feelings for her—but when Thea refuses his invitation to sample Christmas in New York City because what they share is nothing more than sheet-burning sex, Ronan sets out to change her mind.
Deep down Thea Moretti knows she cares for Ronan, but she can’t move past her grief over her late husband. Loud music and sex with Ronan are the only things she’s got that her feel alive, so she takes as much of both as she can get. She knows Ronan wants more, but during the darkest time of the year finding her way won’t be easy.
Ronan gambles everything and challenges Thea: one night of passion with him and another man. Can he prove to her that what they share isn’t just great sex but an emotional connection strong enough to last forever?
For more information about Anne–
And finally…. the good stuff… Anne is being generous enough to allow one lucky commentor to win a download of this wonderfully touching story… Just answer this question for me below to have a chance to win… What was your favorite Christmas present you ever received?
Contest will close on 12/26/12 at 11:59 pm CST.
This is a hard one to review… not because I didn’t like the hero… he was swoon worthy.. but his heroine just pissed me off a few times.. actually make that more than a few times. Did I understand some of it? Yes. Was I at some points wanting to reach thru the Kindle to wring her stupid neck… OH HELL YES! LOL
Cali is coming out of a long-term marriage where she was unfulfilled sexually and repressed by this lack plus her inability to even talk to her ex. I mean the woman didn’t have any sex at all for many of the last decade of her marriage. She decides to address her unrequited need by joining one of the most exclusive BDSM clubs in town. Once she’s approved she ends up meeting one of the co-owners and starts a hidden relationship with him. She’s still unable to truly express her feelings or even acknowledge that as an adult she can have a sexual relationship but she’s got a lot of issues.
OK.. now on to the good stuff.. our wonderful hero…Jake… man oh man I would love to be in his world… he could do almost anything he ever wished to me and I’d be one happy girl. Sure he has issues with needing to move on every once in a while but hey things could be worse. He’s such a caring man but with his past I can understand this need to never stay anywhere very long. He’s sooooo patient with Cali and while he does everything he can to make her happy and trust she just keeps throwing it all away with her own insecurities. Towards the end when she pulls he stunt I almost lost it…… I mean the damn man put his heart on his sleeve and you just… Ok.. stepping away from the chance of a royal rant..
While I had issues with the heroine I still enjoyed the story enough to say it is worth a read but please be patient because Jake is sooooo worth it.
Thanks to Carina Press and NetGalley.com for giving me the chance to read this in exchange for my honest review. As always with Carina titles you can click the link on my sidebar to head to their site to pick this and any of their other titles up.
When Katie asked me if I wanted to check out some upcoming reads my answer was “YES YES YES”. Now mind you I didn’t know exactly what she was sending me but man oh man this one was so yummy. I believe when I was reading this I kept tweeting “OMFG This is war war war too freaking HAWT!!!” If you don’t like M/M then please turn away from this review because this is one steamy man-love story complete with angst and past heartbreak…
Kyle was born to money and prestige. His current career as a hot Hollywood producer has just continued this tread of power and privilege. Only one issue haunts him… He’s gay. Now I know … who really cares.. well his family for one and in reality the industry he is still proving himself to. So he’s deeply in the closet and satisfies his urges with well hidden affairs. His production company hires a stunt company that uses ex-felons and other outsiders as performers. One of the owners/performers of this company is his one major teenage regret – Nathan. You see he and Nathan had an incredible connection that blew apart due to one major mistake. He’s never really come to terms with what happened and as we soon find out they both still want each other with an incredibly combustable result… *fans self* dear God the pool table…. WOWZA.
Nathan has never forgotten Kyle. He never felt like he was enough for Kyle but cannot deny how much chemistry they had and still have. He’s got his own issues to work thru and is unwilling to keep his true feelings hidden. He doesn’t like life in the closet so doesn’t understand Kyle’s inability to live his life openly and without fear. He’s tough on the outside but inside he truly is a lost little boy who just wants to be with the man he loves openly and without reservations. He pushes Kyle when needed but isn’t willing to be hidden away in the closet so pushes away from what he so desperately wants…
This was a very angst ridden… dear god scorch the sheets and whatever other surfaces the men end up on… incredible love story. The men both are so much better when they are together than when they are apart and getting glimpses of what they were to each other as teenagers just pumps the volume up on what they ultimately become. I was so proud of both men as they grew up and into the couple they become.
Again.. dear gawd HAWT … Thanks to Katie Porter for giving me this with no real expectation of a review but man oh man.. just read this one.