Ok - this will be short, sweet and to the point, unfortunately, since my kids are being hellions angels and seem to not be able to leave me alone long enough to post! Ah the joys of motherhood. (and sorry, I'm not including links either - yeah, I suck)
What do you do when you get an email telling you you've won a book and you can't remember what you've won? You write back and ask, of course. Except then you don't read the entire email so when you get the book you kind of look at it, like, WTF? Then you go back and read the entire email and realize you're an idiot! lol This, as you can guess, is what happened to me. I thought I was getting Janice Maynard's soon to be released By Appointment Only. Um, NOT. I got one of her Precious Gem collection books from 1997. Yes, the cover does look like she's a baby bird accepting worms from her mother. But no, it's just him with his tongue. (Ok, I've obviously not had enough sleep this weekend!) Anyway, the hero drove me up a freakin wall. Every time the heroine told him that she couldn't see him anymore, which was definitely more than once, he would say mean things to her, i.e. she didn't have a brain in her head (and my personal favorite) she was going to end up old and alone - niiiiice. And she still wanted to be with this clown? Come on!
I started reading Weddings from Hell with stories from Maggie Shayne, Jeaniene Frost, Terri Garey & Kathryn Smith. I got through the first, Till Death by Maggie Shayne, which was almost painful...and part of Happily Never After by Jeaniene Frost before getting completely distracted by My Fair Captain. I'm sure I'll go back and read the rest at a later date. Please, someone remind me of that since I may forget! They say the mind is the first to go.
Lisabea reminded me - in a totally and obscure roundabout way, without even knowing she was doing it - that I should read My Fair Captain by J. L. Langley. Oh dear Lord what a fabulous book! I absolutely loved the whole premise of the book, the setting, the characters - all of them - I could go on and on. An absolutely wonderful book!
Then came a novella by Missy Lyons entitled Gold Fever. An ok book. Parts drove me nuts - like when the heroine left the hero to become a whore and he didn't come looking for her for 2 weeks. Yep, that's love. Too bad she liked it in the brothel so much! lol
Next was The Broken H by J. L. Langley. It was ok. See review below.
Still reading the Troubleshooters series by Suzanne Brockmann. She's still whipping out the great books in this series...so I'm still reading them. I love how she usually has 3 different stories going on at the same time - one never gets bored reading them. So I finished Out of Control which was incredible and Into the Night which was also wonderful, but very serious and very sad...but there was also an HEA.
TITLE: The Broken H AUTHOR:J.L. Langley SERIES: Yes, this is book 2 in the Ranch series Book 1: The Tin Star
REASON FOR READING: I had just finished My Fair Captain (OMG!) and didn’t have another book with me…but I had my ereader that had this book on it so I dove in.
SUMMARY:(From J. L. Langley’s site) Sheriff Grayson Hunter hasn’t felt like he belonged for a long time. Once he loved The Broken H, his ancestral home and Shane Cortez with all that he was. Now he tries to stay as far away from the ranch and the man as possible until an accident brings them together.
Shane Cortez has been the Broken H’s foreman for going on twenty years, he’s lived on the ranch for even longer. Because of a rocky past that sent him fleeing his home and seeking refuge on The Broken H, he’s kept himself from the one thing that has always been dear to him…Grayson.
Now Shane has let go of the demons that haunted him for so long. And he wants Gray. They'll have to mend what's broken to make a life together.
THOUGHTS/OPINION: The men…
I really liked Grayson. Gray was confident of who he was. He had left home and become a bull rider and made a name for himself. He had taken the money from his winnings and put himself through college even though his parents would have paid for it. He became a SWAT team member but eventually went back to his small town and was elected Sheriff. He was gay, but once he got together with Shane totally didn’t care who knew. His parents were very understanding people and had raised him to be a great man. I liked that his love for Shane hadn’t lessened over the years even though he believed that Shane wasn’t gay, and I liked that he didn’t care about the 13 year age difference between them
Shane was the Foreman of the Broken H. He had always loved Grayson, whose parents owned the Broken H, but more in a brotherly way until Gray started getting older. He had feelings for Gray when Gray was 17 but was afraid that he was influencing Gray’s sexual preferences with his own. Shane had a few confidence issues that were completely understandable based on his past. We eventually find out what his past entailed some emotional stress that he felt would influence Gray’s feelings for him. But Gray loved him despite his past. Oh, and Shane had great hair! Think Apache with hair down to his butt….mmmm!
Though I like the characters in the book I was a little eh about the story. There just wasn’t enough of it. The story line was good I just felt that there wasn’t enough of it put in. There was a ton of sex...which not always a bad thing, but I think the story suffered for it. Now, I was quite possilby influenced by the fact that I had just finished My Fair Captain which was so awesome and was expecting The Broken H to be just as good. It just wasn't as good.
Was the author new to you and would you read something by this author again? As I've said, right before The Broken H I had read My Fair Captain which was incredibly wonderful so yes, I will definitely be reading more of Langley’s work. I can hardly wait for November and the The Englor Affair.
Are you keeping it or passing it on? I’ll keep it.
Did you enjoy the book? Yes
Would you recommend this book to others? I don’t know. I’m torn on that one.
It has been like Hades where I live. The heat has been anywhere between 107 and 113. Remind me why I live here again? I think they're taking the Sunny Southern California thing a little far. Well, it just made me want to stay indoors in order to stay cool so I read A LOT this week.
We're having a great time over at the DIK ladies blog. Don't forget to hop over there daily to see everyone's "About Me" questions and answers.
I read The Sun Witch by Linda Winstead Jones first. See below for review. I liked the book overall but didn't like being left with unanswered questions. I guess they got me though since I do plan on reading the next books for find out what happend.
The Darkest Kiss by Gena Showalter was next. This is the second book in her Lords of the Underworld series. (I think there's an ebook prequel too but I haven't read that yet). I really liked this book. Lucien is scarred yet wonderful and I loved Anya's feistiness. She wasn't afraid to go for what she wanted and I liked that alot. We got some good insight into the other Lords' futures too and that was great.
I read The Assignment by Evangeline Anderson last week and really liked Valenti and O'Brian's characters so when I saw the 2 shorts, I'll Be Hot For Christmas and Fireworks, she had with their characters I was up for reading them. I have to tell you I was more than disappointed. They basically had the same story lines - one of the characters is acting strange after a major event in their lives, won't communicate...let's pound em with sex to get em talking. I've read the story lines before, it's just not my kind of thing...although it may be someone elses.
The 3rd installment in the Troubleshooters series is Over The Edge by Suzanne Brockmann. I have to tell you that I emailed Shannon M. to thank her for recommending this series to me. I seriously loved this book. I laughed, I cryed. Just an awesome read!
Dr. Feelgood by Alice Gaines. Heh. Funny name. Cute little novella. Lots of sex.
Finally got around to reading Through the Veil by Shiloh Walker (RAW author). I honestly wasn't sure about it even halfway through, but by the end I was really liking it. I'm hoping there will be a follow up book with Morne! :)
The Power of Love Anthology I won at Book Binge. 12 authors have written shorts about love. I really enjoyed reading it and it just kinda warmed the cockles of my shriveled little heart.
COPYRIGHT: 2004 SERIES: Yes this is the first in the Fyne Witch trilogy (aka Sisters of the Sun)
#2 The Moon Witch
#3 The Star Witch
Reason for reading:
The series was recommended to me over a year ago. I bought all three books right away but never got around to reading them.
The three Fyne witches are sisters. For 365 years all Fyne witches have been cursed to never have a true and lasting love. Sophie is the youngest and the least powerful, or so she thinks, of the three sisters. She dreams for 3 nights of a man with green eyes. During her early morning swim she meets the man from her dreams and they share a sexual encounter. Sophie realizes how sad the man is and wishes him luck and well-being.
A year later the man, Kane, comes back to the pond where he first met Angel, which is how Sophie had had identified herself. Kane believes the woman from his dreams is not real. Kane ends up seeing Sophie at the pond, but she’s also with their daughter Ariana. After learning of the baby, Kane wants to marry Sophie but she refuses. She knows herself enough to know that if she spends time with Kane she might fall in love and the Fyne witches can’t fall in love because the men they love end up dying before they turn 30.
During the time Kane is town to try to talk Sophie into marrying him a scorned suitor kidnaps Ariana and takes her to the Imperial Palace with instructions that if Sophie wants her child back that she will need to go to the palace and marry him.
Once at the palace the Emperor plans to marry Sophie as revenge on her father. Kane and Sophie need to save Ariana, but then they need to save themselves as well.
This book had a lot of stuff going on with many different characters.
There was Sophie who was not planning on loving just one man. Since the Fyne woman were not to know love she would just give her body to men and have children that way. (Ok – not the best of plans – but it worked for her mom so why wouldn’t it work for her?) She was a virgin when she went to Kane and then could not stop thinking about him. Once Kane returns, her feelings grow despite her attempts to quell them. Once Ariana is kidnapped she just wants her baby back. While she is on the journey to the palace to retrieve her daughter her powers, as well as her feelings for Kane, grow and grow. By the time she is at the palace she is learning to control those powers. She discovers that not only is she not the least powerful witch in her family…she’s the most powerful. I truly loved Sophie. She was a quiet unassuming woman before she met Kane but love for her child and eventually for Kane makes her strong and capable. It sounds like a cheesy thing…but the strength she gains from her love works for the story.
There was Kane who was a rebel against the Imperial Army and his quest is to unseat the Emperor. The Imperial Army kills his family and he is left for dead. He only wants to die and is lying by a pond hoping he can drink himself into a grave when Sophie finds him. After their sexual encounter Sophie, unbeknownst to Kane, wishes him good luck and well being. When Kane awakes he is happy, healthy and has great luck for 1 year. Unfortunately he can’t remember anything of his life before the day with Sophie. After a year and finally finding Sophie her sister takes the spell off. He remembers that his family is gone and is extremely mad at Sophie. He eventually gets over this – learning that he can’t live without Sophie after she is taken by an Anwyn, Ryn…which I got the impression of being a werewolf of sorts…who thinks she’s his mate. (This was kind of an odd way to introduce this character into the story and it was a very short part. I haven’t read the backs of the other books but I’m guessing he plays a part in one of them). Kane saves Sophie and realizes he loves her. Kane is just nothing but hot. He not overtly sexual for most of the book but he just has this sensuality about him that just kind of oozes from him. He’s very protective of Sophie and Ariana as he should be and I loved that.
Then there’s the ongoing story about the Emperor and Liane. She is a concubine and assassin at the palace but also has the ear of the emperor. She hates him and wants nothing more than to be trusted, and not bodily searched each time she sees him, so that she can bring a knife to his bedroom and kill him. Later we discover that Liane is Kane’s sister who was stolen from their home when she was 15. After all is said and done she ends up loving the Emperor. (I can understand that Liane has learned to have feelings for this man, but she wanted her freedom sooooo badly it was hard for me to see that she was given it and didn’t take it.) The Emperor also decides after hearing of Sophie’s sisters that they need to be brought to the palace but we never learn for what use. Because of Sophie’s powers Liane ends up being pregnant at the end of the book but we’re left up in the air as to what will happen since she is a concubine and of course not married. The entire book the Emperor would only accept a legitimate heir.
The end of the book kind of left us hanging which I’m never a big fan of. Kane and Sophie and Ariana are all together and Sophie is pregnant again…but the curse isn’t broken. The end states the fact that they will be trying to discover a way to break the curse so they can have their HEA but I wanted happy, happy, joy, joy! Kane also planned on rejoining his rebel forces to unseat the Emperor and I’m wondering where this will leave Sophie and the babies since the chances of him getting killed are huge.
I love my HEA’s in my book. This book just didn’t provide that for me. I’m glad that Kane and Sophie are together and in love but it just wasn’t enough. Although I didn’t think the curse would be broken in this book, since it’s a trilogy, I was definitely disappointed that more steps weren’t taken toward that end. Overall though I thought it was a good read.
Was the author new to you and would you read something by this author again?
I read one other of her books, Raintree: Haunted, that was pretty good. I will read the other 2 books in the series because I was left with too many unanswered questions from this one.
Are you keeping it or passing it on?
I haven’t actually decided. I guess it depends on the other 2 books and how I feel about the series as a whole.
Did you enjoy the book? Yes
Would you recommend this book to others? Not at this time, but again, maybe after I finish the other 2 books. I can’t imagine you could read the other 2 without reading the first.
It was a fabulous reading week to say the least. There wasn't one I read that I didn't really like and most I loved - that's a very rare thing as far as I'm concerned.
Then there was the start of the DIK Ladies blog which has been brain fryingly wonderful. You can visit there daily for info on a different DIK lady starting tomorrow. Then soon we'll be talking about our DIK book picks as well as our DIK hero picks and then visits from some fabulous authors (check the right side of the blog for the current author schedule) who'll do the same. Should be a ton of fun!
So onto the books...
I started off with Wicked Game - you can check out the review I did last week for further details but let me say it's definitely worth the read.
After reading about vampires I wanted to move on to something that was the polar opposite so I then read The Lost Duke of Wyndham. What a great book! I truly loved Grace and Jack. And some of those tender thoughts that Jack had? OMG - so stinkin romantic. This was my first book by Julia Quinn but it certainly won't be my last.
Ok so I'd done Vamps and a historical so I figured I'd delve back into the contemporary world of the Troubleshooters again with The Defiant Hero by Suzanne Brockmann. I kind of figured that since I had liked the first book so much that it liking just couldn't continue. Well it definitely proved me wrong! It was a wonderful book and again loved moving through time with Eve's stories of her past with Ralph to the problems with Nilsson & Meg. I also freakin loooooved the subplot with Starrett & Alyssa Locke - I mean, how could you not? Can hardly wait to read more of the stories of Team Sixteen.
A Lady in Waiting by Samantha Kane was a nice novella in the middle of the week. It was a good story with lots of hot sexin - oh yeah baby. There was one part at the end that was little disappointing but after talking to a friend and hearing that she actually really liked that part - I have to question myself! lol You can read an excerpt here.
My big SQUEEEEE for the week was an ARC that I received for Hostage to Pleasure by Nalini Singh. Holy cow and oh.my.god. I loved, loved, loved this book. I loved Dorian before this book and now I'm even happier that he's in my hut on the DIK island. What an amazingly wonderful man...who's fuckin HOT!!! Oh yeah, the heroine was good too I think. HAHA! Just kidding. The book was great, the romance was great, I love Nalini's work and I will definitely be reading it again when it releases in September.
My last book of the week was The Assignment by Evangeline Anderson. This was m/m fiction and I loved it. Nick and Sean are cops, partners, best friends. Nick has discovered that he's in love with Sean. Their current assignment is to infiltrate a gay resort to catch a coke dealer. What follows is hot, hot, hot...but parts are so touching and loving it was amazing. I'm definitely looking forward to reading more of E.A's work!
Who doesn't love a book giveaway? I have a copy of Through The Veil by Shiloh Walker in my hot little hand. Unfortunately it tells me it wants to go live with someone else. I shouldn't be surprised, my kids tell me that all the time! Ok, just kidding.
Anyway, all you have to do is leave a comment by midnight Saturday (pacific time) and I'll randomly pick a winner on Sunday and post the name here. Good luck!!
Lee Ross always knew she was not entirely human. But when the man who has plagued her dreams her entire life appears in the flesh, can she give up everything she knows to follow him to another realm? Read exerpt here.
REASON FOR READING: I had read a review on Anna’s myspace blog and was pretty interested. Then I entered a contest and won the book so why not??
SUMMARY: [from Amazon] Newbie marketing intern Ciara Griffin lands a job at WVMP, a station threatened with being sold to Skywave, a giant communications conglomerate, unless ad revenue picks up. A former con artist with a canny way with people, Ciara soon learns that the DJs are undead and specialists in the musical eras in which they were turned into vampires. One of them, Shane McAllister (turned in 1995), is really hot and dangerously tempting. In order to attract more listeners, Ciara promotes a new marketing strategy and the Sherwood, Md., station becomes 94.3 WVMP, the Lifeblood of Rock and Roll, exploiting the fang factor (which no listener takes seriously) for profit. It works, until an ancient vampire cult wants to pull the plug. Also playing in is The Control, an equally ancient paramilitary group created to protect good vampires and kill bad ones. You can read an excerpt here.
I really enjoyed this book. I thought that the originality of the author to make vampires that stay in their “Life Time” and yet try to deal with the ever changing, fast paced world was wonderful. Ciara (keer-ah) was a great character. She had come from a family of grifters and was trying to make a new life for herself, but the grifting was just part of who she was so it was an on-going battle for her. She had a great sense of humor and I really liked how down to earth she was. She wasn’t the type who found out about vampires and was ok, no problem. She definitely had to get used to the idea and of course the blood gave her constant “squeege” moments. She had to do for herself for years and then she’s smack dab in this campaign to try to help others which is definitely something new a different for her.
Shane was a hottie who was stuck in the grunge 90’s. He gets very close to Ciara very quickly but it doesn’t seem wrong to me – it just kind of works.
Also, the vamps are stuck in their musical eras but the author didn’t do what most people would think. The 60’s vamp was hippie, but had a dark side rather than the “I love you man!” peace thing going on. The 70’s vamp was Reggae rather than disco, the 80’s vamp was goth & punk rather than the Cindy Lauper/Madonna stereotype and so on.
Was the author new to you and would you read something by this author again?
She’s new to me. She has a romantic fantasy trilogy that I’m interested in reading.
Are you keeping it or passing it on?
Keeping it. I liked the book and it’s signed by the author so of course I will!
Did you enjoy the book? Yes
Would you recommend this book to others? Yes
SCORE: 4 out of 5
Anything else? I’m wondering if the author will make this into a series. There are 4 more male vampires and 1 female vampire that are DJ’s at WVMP so I’ll be curious if she if she’ll give them their own love interests.
Email from Jeri Smith-Ready (slightly edited)
I just wanted to say thanks for reviewing WICKED GAME on your blog--I'm so glad you enjoyed it. :-)
Also, I wanted to let you know that it is in fact the first in a series. The sequel, BAD TO THE BONE, will be out next May, and between now and then I'll be posting free short stories on my website approx. one every other month) about each vampire DJ's 'turning,' in their own words. Since it's urban fantasy, the series will continue to follow Ciara and Shane and the development of their relationship, rather than give each of the vampire DJs their own romance book.
However, I'm always open to spinoffs. ;-)
You can also let people know that my newsletter subscribers will get a week's sneak peek at the stories before the rest of the world (people can go to my home page to sign up for the newsletter).
I've read some really great books this week. I've been horrible about posting reviews and need to do more, I know. As much as I've loved the books I'm reading I've just not been able to get in the review typing mode. I'll be better soon, I swear.
I started my week off with Lover Enshrined. You all know my opinions by now and if you missed that just go down one post and all will be revealed. If you've never read the Black Dagger Brotherhood series then shame on you! (except you Sarai!)
After seeing all the talk about Josh Lanyon and his Adrien English Mystery series on Lisabea's blog I felt compelled to read the books: Fatal Shadows, A Dangerous Thing & The Hell You Say. This was my first foray into the M/M Fiction (well, full-length, I've read shorts) and I loved it. The mysteries were great, JL kept me guessing through most of the books wondering whodunit. I loved Adrien - he's funny, sarcastic, good looking (supposedly like Montgomery Clift - yeah, baby) and he has this dialogues with himself that I just love. His serious love interest throughout the series is Jake Riordan. Ah, Jake. I love Jake, but yet...I want to slap Jake. Let's just say it's an ongoing relationship that runs through all of the books and they just need to be together - forevah!! Great books - I highly recommend them. I can hardly wait for the next in the series - Death Of A Pirate King
The next was a short from Shiloh Walker (RAW author) Drastic Measures. It was a nice short story and a good distraction
Manhunting by Jennifer Crusie was up next. I love Crusie's work and have read almost all of it. This one didn't disappoint. The main characters were down to earth and easily likeable, the story was funny and quirky and I loved it.
On the recommendation of a friend I read Lacey Alexander's Voyeur. It was an erotic story of Laura Watkins who has writers block. She goes away to a friends cousins house in Colorado for R & R to see if she can rid herself of this block. The owner of the house, Braden, is checking out the house on his webcam from California and see's Laura pleasuring herself. What follows is hot, hot, hot. I liked this story and the "relationship" between Laura and Braden...it was a good read. Just be warned if you don't like a ton of sex, don't read this book! lol (FYI - Lacey Alexander is aka Toni Blake who wrote Letters To A Secret Lover that I liked so well)
Last but not least was Unsung Hero, Book 1 of the Troubleshooters series by Suzanne Brockmann. This is the first book that I've read by Ms. Brockmann and it was great. I loved Tom and all of his so called paranoia. I loved Joe and Charles and their quarrels, their flashbacks and their friendship. I liked heroine Kelly, but she just got a little annoying after a while. If you haven't read this put it in your TBR. Thanks Shannon! :)
Ok, I've had my crack injection and I'm well satisfied.
Anyone who knows me knows that I absolutely loved the first 3 books in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series by JR Ward. So I have to say I wondered and wondered if Love Enshrined was going to be worth the read since Lover Revealed was a huge disappointment and Lover Unbound was, well...frustrating to say the least.
I'm not going to do a review since I'm sure I couldn't do the book justice and you can get great reviews at both Christine's blog and at Katie(babs) and Kristie(j)'s Blog. But, I just wanted to say that for those of my friends who are wondering if they should read this or not. READ IT!! The romance in the book (if you can call it a romance) is virtually non-existent, but the rest of the book is wonderful.
I love my kids. Love them, love them, love them. (I had to say that first)
Do your kids drive you crazy? Mine do. They don’t mean to (well, most of the time they don’t mean to. I’m positive that some of the time they do shit to push my buttons) and honestly, it could just be that I’m completely fucked up in the head and am so easily crazed that they have nothing to do with it. Of course I’m going with it’s their fault so on I go. Today we discuss just 1 child…
My oldest daughter is 10. 10 going on 16. She thinks she rules freakin roost. She orders the 5 year old around and tells her what to do. I hear this is a normal thing for kids that are a few years apart in age but I’m telling you it makes me cukoo! Seriously. I’M THE MOM! I can’t tell you how many times I say that to her. Let me also say that she’s such a cutie and is going to be a total heartbreaker. She has a kind heart and will give you the shirt off of her back. That being said…she lies. And lies. And lies. She lies about what she’s eaten, what she’s not eaten (she has food allergies). If she’s sick, if she’s not sick. What’s she done at school or not. I could go on and on. She cries wolf so often we have no idea when to believe her.
I know I’m just venting here but tell me, have any of you dealt with the whole lying thing with your kids and if so what the heck did you do to stay just this side of the sanitarium??
OMG what a crazy week. My biggest kick of the week was gathering the covers to post on the blog. Holy shit - some are absolutely hilarious, what the fuck were they thinking covers! I feel for those authors who have no control over what their covers will look like - that would drive me nuts!
I started my reading week off reading Fallen by Erin McCarthy (RAW author) and had to put it aside...it just wasn't doing it for me. I plan on going back to it at some point so I have hopes it will get better. It wasn't awful by any means but there are so many books out there I want to read - I needed to move on at the time!
Fever by Kimberly Dean is a novella that I've read before. I'm not sure what attracts me to this book...possibly the hot hero who willingly takes care of the oh so ill heroine. Not sure but it's a good one.
I was kind of in a Kimberly Dean mood after reading Fever so I moved on to another novella of hers, Hypnotica. A very shy girl goes on a cruise with her sister and brother-in-law, but also his brother who she finds very attractive. She's put under hypnosis while on the ship and you can only imagine what a shy girl can do when the trigger word is spoken. Apparently the guy on the cover wants to sun himself at night - having nothing whatsover to do with the book. Hmmmm.
Trying to read at least a RAW author a week I read a couple of shorts by Shiloh Walker: Ghost of A Chance and Whipped Cream and Handcuffs. Let me just say that they were cute but I could have made it through life without reading them. And let me say - these to covers...Bwahahahaha! After all of those shorts and novellas I was very excited to star Damien by Jacquelyn Frank (RAW author). I thought it was great and can hardly wait to read the 5th and final chapter in the Nightwalkers Series, Noah.
So as you can see by an earlier post I listed a few books and asked which one I should read next...well I decided to go with The Spymaster's Lady since I'd heard such good things about it. Oh.My.God. That was one damn good read. Get thee to the bookstore and buy that book cuz it's a keeper! What a great way to end the reading week. Ok - so technically Sunday is the beginning of the week but it's the end of my reading week so just deal!