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Archive for September, 2010

Siren Song by Cat Adams

* I received a copy of this book from Tor Publishing in exchange for an honest review*

Nothing if not resilient, Celia Graves is slowly adjusting to being a half-human, half-vampire Abomination. But her troubles are far from over. Her best friend’s murder is still unsolved, the cops are convinced she should be in jail, and her old lover, the magician Bruno DeLuca, has resurfaced in her life, saying he has something important to tell her.

The vampire attack that transformed Celia kicked her latent Siren abilities into high gear, and now she’s been summoned to the Sirens’ island to justify her existence—and possibly fight for her life—in front of the Siren Queen. Celia isn’t sure she’ll survive to make the trip. The demon she defeated in Blood Song hasn’t exactly gone quietly—he’s left Celia suffering from a powerful curse.

Siren Song picks up right where Blood Song ends.  Celia is still trying to come to grips with being an abomination.  She still has to face her court date and the Queen of the Sirens; she doesn’t have time to be kidnapped.

While at Birwoods she is visited by her Siren cousin Ren, who presents her with a gift of a Wadjeti.  She doesn’t know what to make of the visit but is concerned about what will happen when she finally gets to the island.  She isn’t looking forward t meeting her grandmother, Queen Lopaka.

She deals with her hearing and the police that are not happy that she is being set free, to deal with Bruno and his devastating news.  She is heart broken by what he tells her but she has more pressing issues that don’t allow her to “wallow” in self pity.  She is a strong character and relies on that strength to help her get over him. 

She has to enlist her friends to help her get to the Siren Island.  A fellow bodyguard from a rival agency shows up and wants to help her.  She is very reluctant to accept his help, she is afraid he is up to something.  She has been through so much; it’s really hard for her to trust anyone that hasn’t been part of her circle.  She knows that she needs the help, especially with the Demon still after her but she still hesitates.

She has had to endure so much, from being turned into an abomination, assassination attempts, not to mention a demon that wants her for his self. The scariest thing she has to face is family that she has never met before.  She knows nothing about her heritage or the customs that go with it and that scares her to death.  She would rather be fighting something she can see rather than deal with this. 

She immediately likes her grandmother and presents her with one of her prized knives.  She respects her cousin Adriana after their duel plus she saves her life while she is there.  She also discovers the person responsible for what happened to her sister all those years ago.  She is shocked to the core with this discovery and can’t believe that someone would actually do something that heinous to children. 

The cast of supporting characters are present in this book too but this time, they are forced to do something that will change her relationship with them forever.  The list of people she can trust is getting shorter and shorter.  Along the way though, she adds some new friends to her group.

I enjoyed this book as much as the first one and can’t wait for the next installment in this series. The story is entertaining and held my interest throughout the whole book.  There is the right amount description without over doing.  The characters are compelling and make you want to know more about them.  I am hoping after the ending, we’ll see more of Bruno in the next book.

Overall, I loved Siren Song and definitely recommend this series.  I give it 4 Flaming Hearts. 

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Perfect Partners.com by Kate Richards
* I received a copy of this book from Breathless Press in exchange for an honest review*

Scarred from dating hell, Rachel never expected to receive a membership to PerfectPartners.com from her meddling mother and co-workers on her birthday. To please her loved ones, she joined the Internet dating service, but on her terms and requesting the impossible—until she received a surprise: Mr. Perfect in the flesh.

Handsome, intelligent, Quinn Everby was everything a woman could wish for, if only Rachel could allow herself to give him a chance. Will she put faith in the site’s choice, or will their encounter show Rachel that there is no “perfect partner”?

Imagine your friends getting together to buy you a membership to a dating service.  Rachel was mortified when she opened her birthday gift from her co-workers and mother.  She has a history of dating the wrong type of guys and has sworn off dating for awhile.

She reluctantly fills out the dating questionnaire and is surprised to receive an email from them right away.  Even though she had put some pretty outrageous things on the questionnaire, they had found her perfect match.  When Quinn shows up at her doorstep, she is overwhelmed and shocked that the “perfect” partner really does exist.

Rachel is embarrassed with the idea of using a dating service to find the perfect match.  She wants to find Mr. Right but just doesn’t think he’s out there.  She is an independent career woman that actually likes to cook.  She has a job, house, and friends that she cares about but something is still missing.

She can’t believe how much she and Quinn actually have in common.  There is an instant attraction between them with some sexual tension thrown in.  I like that they didn’t have sex the 1st night they met.  The idea of sharing a movie and staying up all night making out is very appealing.  I think you can fall in love the first time you meet your true mate but I also think it is a rare gift when it does happen.  In this case, these two just met and have only spent one evening together before he left the country.  It’s hard to believe they are ready to commit the rest of their lives to one another.

I would’ve loved to see this story continue on at least a little further and explore their relationship a little deeper.  It’s a good short story that is sweet with likeable characters.  Overall I enjoyed Perfect Partners.com and give this story 3 flaming hearts. 

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The Sevenfold Spell by Tia Nevitt
* I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

Have you ever wondered what happens to the other people in the fairy tale?

Things look grim for Talia and her mother. By royal proclamation, the constables and those annoying “good” fairies have taken away their livelihood by confiscating their spinning wheel. Something to do with a curse on the princess, they said.

Not every young lady has a fairy godmother rushing to her rescue.

Without the promise of an income from spinning, Talia’s prospects for marriage disappear, and she and her mother face destitution. Past caring about breaking an arbitrary and cruel law, rebellious Talia determines to build a new spinning wheel, the only one in the nation—which plays right into the evil fairy’s diabolical plan. Talia discovers that finding a happy ending requires sacrifice. But is it a sacrifice she’s willing to make?

The Sevenfold spell is a spin on the sleeping beauty fairytale.  You have a princess that has an evil spell placed on her, prince charming that is supposed to break the spell, and fairy godmothers to try and protect the princess.

 Talia and her mother don’t know what they are going to do now that they had to give up their spinning wheel like everyone else because of the evil curse on the princess.  She was upset that she and Willard were no longer able to get married.  You see, she was a plain girl with warts on her face.  Willard was the only one that saw the true beauty within her.  She knew her prospects for marriage were few and far between so she resigned herself to be a spinster and alone the rest of her life.  She tried to have a baby with Willard before he joined the monastery but was devastated to learn she was barren.

Talia and her mother dealt with many trials and tribulations.  She became friends with the tavern owner ,Widow Harla and had affairs with several men in town, including the wainwright, Master Caleb.  She couldn’t have any children of her own but was allowed to help care for a neighbors goddaughter.  Rose was taken away abruptly and Talia didn’t see her again until many years later, which devastated her.  Later, she became very ill with consumption.  She always wondered what had become of Willard and never forgot him.

Talia was rewarded for the choices she made that fateful day.  She was overwhelmed with the wishes the fairy godmother’s granted her.  She was determined that she would find Willard and buy his freedom from the monastery.  In the end, Talia used her good fortune to pay if forward to help others.  Oh yeah, the other story, the prince and princess lived happily ever after, or did they?

Talia had to deal with so much heartache but I think that was what made her such a strong person.  She was determined not to let her situation get the best of her.  She was ahead of her time when it came to how she viewed her relationship with the men.  It was frowned upon during her time for an unmarried woman to have an affair with a man. 

I didn’t really like Willard’s character at the beginning but wow, what a man he turned into.  Who wouldn’t want a man that is willing to give up everything and everyone just for you.  Talia is a very strong, independent woman and she definitely needed for her man to be just as strong.  I think in the end they are well matched.  The story flowed very nicely with the passage of time without having too much or too little information.  The twist to the fairy tale was a very nice surprise, I’ve grown up watching all the Disney movies and Sleeping Beauty has always been one of my favorites.

Overall I give The Sevenfold Spell 3 1/2 Flaming Hearts. 

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Thank you for stopping by today and welcoming our guest blogger Delilah Devlin.  I met Delilah about a year ago and fell in love with her books.  She enjoys hearing from her fans and took the time to stop by our book club meeting last summer.  She has many books published today both in ebook and print format through popular publishers such as Ellora’s Cave and Samhain.  She is even trying her hand at self publishing with Amazon.  Please stop by and make her feel welcome.  ~ Heather

In my Dark Realm series, Avon let me loose to play. I’m not sure they were ready for what I ‘d bring, and I know Avon readers weren’t prepared, but I didn’t hold back. Each of the stories came from deep inside me. Each was written without being hard-plotted because I was eager to see where the story would lead me.

I prepared by reading and dreaming. I wanted a mythology I could believe. I chose Ancient Sumerian and Judeo-Christian lore, some of it pretty obscure, to build my world. Then I peopled it with vampires, demons, and werewolves—all with very human problems but set against the changing landscape of New Orleans, post-Katrina.

Darkness Captured is the last of the books. I had places I could go with the next-gen characters, but it’s not a perfect world. Maybe I can be convinced to write the rest of the series as eBooks. I hate letting them drift away.

This last book was the most ambitious. The one that made me really dig. I sent a woman into hell and had to envision what that would look like. Again, I went back to Ancient Sumer and their belief in the Land of the Dead where the mythical creatures they worshiped reside. And I needed a dark anti-hero, someone to tempt the woman while she waited for her true hero to rescue her. I enjoyed what happened. I hope you do too.

If you have questions, about the series, or about anything else you’re curious about, I’d love to talk.

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

In Darkness Captured, the extraordinary Delilah Devlin combines two blistering hot genres—women’s erotic fiction and paranormal romance—and the result is a masterwork of vampire erotica that’s almost too torrid to handle! The decidedly adult adventure of a passionate werewolf who’s willing to storm the gates of hell to rescue a princess from the clutches of a demon, Devlin’s Darkness Captured is dark, sexy, and absolutely sizzling. Shapeshifter love has never been hotter!

Driven by insatiable desire, a werewolf will enter hell to rescue a princess captured by the Master of Demons…

Headstrong and proud—a royal creature of sinuous grace, all primal instinct and lethal beauty—the shapeshifter Gabriella has agreed to serve as emissary to the vampires who rule in the shadows of the New Orleans night. But she cannot resist the pull of the demon she glimpses on the other side of a mirror, and she is drawn to him hungrily, through a magical portal into the Land of the Dead. Now an eternal nightmare awaits Gabriella at the hands of a mesmerizing dark lord who satisfies her every erotic need…while slowly devouring her soul.

The powerful warrior wolf Guntram Brandt is responsible for the safety of the vanished princess he swore allegiance to years before. Yet it is more than a soldier’s loyalty that pulls Guntram down into the depths of nightmare—for Gabriella ignites within him a burning animal passion that must be satisfied.

But when offered an escape, will she follow her rescuer to safety—torn between her lustful obsession with the dark lord who has enslaved her and her fierce sensual attraction to the only wolf who could ever master her?

To celebrate the release, I am running a couple of contests with some exciting prizes. Be sure to check out my blog for more details: http://www.delilahdevlin.com/blog/

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Carnal Connections by Berengaria Brown
* I received a copy of this book from Breathless Press in exchange for an honest review*

 Ithiel meets Jason and Toby at a wedding, and a night of hot passion follows. But what will happen the next morning?

Jason is darkly handsome and delicious. Toby is quicksilver lightness and fun—and Ithiel wants them both. But can three men form an ongoing relationship, or is one night all they will ever have?

Carnal Connections is a short, quick read.  It’s about 3 guys who meet at a wedding and decide to have a little fun with each other.  There is a little pre-encounter dialogue between the three of them at the wedding but the story centers around the after party in Ithiel’s hotel room.

This story is smokin’ HOT and makes you wonder, “can you really do that?”  They are focused on giving each other the ultimate pleasure and exploring the different ways to achieve that goal. 

There is not a lot of build up to the climax but they do hint that there could be a future for them.  It’s a good story for what you get but I would’ve liked a little more depth to characters or maybe an established relationship between them.  I give Carnal Connections 3 Flaming Hearts.

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Mercy by Eleri Stone

* I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

To the Yaguara, an ancient jaguar shape-shifting people living deep in the Amazon jungle, nothing matters more than strength. Iada is their champion; genetically pure, she has been trained since birth to fight. Her destiny is to become the next Queen of the Yaguara by winning the tournament of succession—a battle to the death.

Her opponent is Gabriel, a half-blooded outcast whose mother was human. To everyone’s shock, he defeats Iada but does not strike the death blow—instead, he extends mercy, thereby claiming her as his mate.

Despite their enmity, the attraction between them is powerful, and soon they are mates in more than name only. Their mutual distrust serves only to fuel their passion—two champions bested only by their overpowering desire for each other.

But Gabriel has an agenda that threatens the most basic tenets of Yaguara society—and that will force Iada to choose between her people or her King.

Iada’s parents were killed when she is younger and she was raised by her uncle’s.  She was trained to fight from a very young age so she would be ready to take her place as Queen of the Yaguara when the time came.  She’s really never been her own person or able to make her own decisions, she’s always been her uncle’s pawn.

Gabriel has been studying his Yaguara heritage with the help of a full blooded shifter that is living in one of his shelters.  The Shifter takes him under his wing and trains him to defeat their champion.  His people are under attack and the only way he can save them is to defeat Iada and become King of Yaguara.

He knows he won’t be accepted as King because he and others like him are seen as mutants   During the fight Gabriel decides to show mercy toward Iada rather than kill her.  He offers her the chance to rule as his Queen.  He expects her to pledge her alliance to him and give up her family, yet when she does, he questions her motives and doubts her sincerity. 

Iada is really struggling with the things she has learned her uncle’s have done since she has been secluded most of her life.  Gabriel doesn’t believe her at first but as the story progresses he realizes that he might have been wrong about her, until tragedy strikes their home.

Iada knows the only way to prove herself and her motives is to aide them in finding Michael.  She manipulates the situation and in the end hurts Gabriel and herself in the process.  She knows they fit together well as mates but she feels like he will never love her or trust her.  She is torn because she doesn’t understand what is going on in her heart.  She is struggling to be her own person and for the first time not have someone telling depending on her to do something.

The sexual chemistry between these two is evident from the fight scene on.  They complement each other as mates.  Iada is tough and doesn’t need anyone to take care of her but she does need someone to bring out her softer side. Gabriel is so busy taking care of others that he appreciates the fact that she is able to take care of herself.  He  doesn’t understand why  he saves her at the time but as the story progresses, it’s obvious he needs a strong Queen who can stand beside him, not behind him.

Overall this story was very enjoyable and I’d love to see more of this story.  I give Mercy 3 1/2 flaming hearts. 

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Delectable Interview by Molly Diamond
* I received a copy of this book from Breathless Press in exchange for an honest review*

Out of work and out of money, Tara is desperate for a job. Luckily, her best friend has the perfect connection in mind to help a girl out.

But when Tara’s ex-boyfriend, Tony, shows up to drive her to meet her potential new boss can she resist the temptation of one last touch, or could this be a prelude to one delectable interview?

All Tara wants is a job to pay the bills so she can finish school.  Her friend sets her up with an interview at The Green Grape but doesn’t tell her who her interview is with.  She is anxious to make a good impression because she needs this job, little does she know, it’s already hers if she wants it.

Tony has been working for the past month to get the restaurant turned around into something nice so he can show it to Tara.  They broke up and he wants her back, not just in his bed but beside him helping him run The Green Grape.

This short story is very HOT and to the point.  Tony wants Tara and convinces her to have a quickie before her interview.  There’s not a lot of build up to the story other than the beginning when you find out a little about Tara.  It is primarily a bedtime story meant for adult readers.  It’s a fun, fast read with some creative uses for chocolate pudding.  I enjoyed the short story and give it 3 flaming hearts. 

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