Monthly Archives: November 2011

The Hunter by Theresa Meyers

The Hunter (The Legend Chronicles, #1)


ORDER A COPY: The Hunter (The Legend Chronicles)

Publisher: Zebra
Publishing Date: November 1, 2011
Paperback: 335 pages

Rating: 4 stars


They’re the Chosen—Winchester, Remington and Colt—brothers trained to hunt down supernatural beings using the latest steam-powered gadgetry. It’s a hard legacy to shoulder, and it’s about to get a lot more dangerous. . .

A Devil Of A Job

Colt Jackson has gotten his name on many a wanted poster with success in the family business: hunting supernaturals across the frontier. Lately, though, there’s a sulfur stink in the wind and the Darkin population is exploding. A rift in the worlds is appearing. To close it, Colt will have to do the unthinkable and work with a demon to pass arcane boundaries no human alone can cross.

Except when he summons his demon, he doesn’t get some horned monstrosity: he gets a curvy redheaded succubus named Lilly, who’s willing to make a bargain to become human again. He also gets Lilly’s secret expertise on the machinations on the dark side of the rift. And her charm and cleverness help to get them out of what his silver-loaded pistol and mechanical horse can’t. Of course, when all hell breaks loose, he might have to sacrifice his soul. But what’s adventure without a little risk?


Colt Jackson needs the help of a demon to retrieve his father’s portion of the Book of Legend so he can close the gates of Hell which seemed to have cracked open a bit more. What he gets when he summons a demon is more than he bargained for. Lilly is a beautiful succubus and Colt needs to keep his wits about him or he’ll end up losing his soul.

Although Lilly is sent by the archdemon Rathe to seduce Colt and claim the Book, Lilly would rather take her chances with Colt and hope that he will help her reclaim her soul if she helps him reclaim his Book.

This book is listed as being “steampunk” and I have to admit I had to look that up. Steampunk refers to the use of steampowered machines created for and used in the story. For example, instead of a standard horse, Colt rides Tempus, a mechanical horse that needs to be wound up, and instead of using a torch searching the dark caves, he uses a coil illuminator that needs to be shaken to produce light. (I think I saw that on an “as seen on TV” ad.)

This is not the first book I read that involved a James Bond’s Q type person who invents time period appropriate gizmos. I think it is very clever and imaginative when we see what we would consider household items being a special invention using period appriopriate science.

We also see the set up of the next two books which involve Winchester and Remmington, Colt’s two brother who will be attempting to find the remaining two portions of the Book which will be brought together to close the door to Hell.

My only complaint is there is not just one but two trips into caves in a very Indiana Jones type hunting for treasure scenes.  Although it was well written and enjoyable, there was that nagging feeling of haven’t we done this already; and with two more stories and two more part of the Book to find, I hope that Ms. Meyers doesn’t plan to keep sending us back down into the mines with hidden traps and ugly demon-dogs and more of the same.

Although I anticipated my usual incubus/succubus prejudice to arise when I started reading this story. Lilly works very hard in this story to keep that unnatural attraction in check so that Colt doesn’t try to bargain his soul to be with her which would ruin her plans for Colt to save her soul.

The next two parts of this story are scheduled for April and December of 2012.

Check out our review of The Slayer (Book 2).

Received a copy courtesy of Kensington Books. Thank you.


Favorite Scene:

Lilly swallowed hard, her heart beating hard, but not from fear. “Tell me something. If you can send a demon back to hell permanently, can you also rescue one?”

He leveled his killer blue gaze on her. “Haven’t ever tried.”

“But you could, in theory.”

His brows dipped down, his mouth twisting into a seductive smile. “Yeah, I suppose.”

“And would you?”

She wait a heartbeat. Then two. He purposely didn’t answer her, but she saw the flicker of uncertainty in his eyes. He was a war with his own feelings, instinct raging against training and no clear victor in sight. Lilly understood the battle only too well. A similar one raged within her as well. As a Darkin she should be fulfilling her duty, getting the Book and taking his soul. But this wasn’t just any man. This was Colt. And every minute she spent with him only intensified her unrealistic dreams of becoming human once more and inspired fantasies of what it could be like to actually have him as all her own.

He moved in closer, putting her on intimate terms with the firm wall of his chest. Her breasts tightened, aching as they rasped against him.

“What exactly did Rathe want with you? Surely it wasn’t just to give a report.” His town grew husky as his gaze lingered on her mouth.

She turned away, unable to bear the intensity of his stare any longer and the way it warmed down into her deepest fantasies about him. He leaned in closer, the tip of his nose skimming against her cheek and down along the length of her neck and back up again, making shivers follow in its wake. His lips brushed against her temple, his warm breath filing her ear. “Tell me, Lilly,” he whispered

Alexandra Ivy

 

Stop by Monday, November 28th to check out my interview with Alexandra Ivy where we discuss her historial romances and her Guardian of Eternity Series. Enter to win a copy of Bound in Darkness. Giveaway ends Friday, December 16th.

 

Cynthia Eden

Cynthia Eden Author Profile
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Make sure to check out Cynthia Eden’s guest post where she discusses Vampires and Angels. Enter to win a copy of Angel of Darkness. Giveaway ends Friday, December 9th.

Hotter After Midnight by Cynthia Eden

Hotter After Midnight (Midnight, #1)


Order a copy:  Hotter After Midnight

Publisher:  Brava
Published:  August 4, 2008
Paperback:  272 pages

Rating:  5 Stars


In her sexy and suspenseful new novel, Cynthia Eden introduces readers to a seductive world where powerful night creatures ignite dark, dangerous hungers. . .

Dr. Emily Drake’s patients tend to be a little unusual. Instead of the typical therapist’s caseload of midlife crises and mother fixations, Emily treats vampires with blood phobias and sex-demons looking for meaningful relationships. But her gift for recognizing and healing the Other–those creatures of the night that most humans don’t even know exist–requires a few house rules. First: Never trust a shifter. Especially not one like Detective Colin Gyth, whose gold-flecked eyes and predatory air make Emily realize how much she’s been longing to lose control.

Colin can’t believe the doctor he’s been assigned to work with on the Night Butcher murder investigation is the one person who could expose his true identity as a wolf shifter. Smart, sexy, and stubborn as hell, Emily brings out the alpha male in Colin, unleashing a wild, heady desire that takes them both over the edge.

But in the shadows, the Night Butcher waits. . .eager to spill Emily’s blood and taste her terror. And he’ll use any means to destroy her, including the one person she has grown to trust. . .

Have a fan handy because Hotter After Midnight is one hot story!  

Someone is killing in the City and it’s looking like the work of a supernatural.  The Captain has ordered Det. Colin Gyth to work with the “Monster Doctor,” Dr. Emily Drake.  Gyth is afraid that the sexy little doctor will unmask him as a shifter, but hopefully not before he gets a chance to undress her.

Someone  else is watching from the shadows and once a turn to dance with the doctor too.

This is a sexy, suspenseful story.   I’d like to take a bite out of shifter Colin Gyth myself.  Who’s out to get the good doctor will keep you guessing ‘til the very end.


Favorite Scene:

“Well, well, is that her?”

The gravelly voice sounded at his side. Colin didn’t bother glancing to his left. He’d know that broken drawl anywhere.

His partner was back.

“Yeah, that’s her.” She pushed the notes aside, reaching for a photo. Held it up, stared.

“Hmmm. Kinda pretty.” A chair shrieked a protest as Todd Brooks sat down.

Colin swiveled his chair very slowly to face him. Todd was the pretty boy of the precinct. Brown hair perfectly cut. Too perfect teeth. And big, brown, You-Can-Trust-Me eyes that he’d used on more than his share of suspects.

The idiots couldn’t trust him, but they never realized that fact until it was too late.

Brooks reeled ‘em in, convinced them he was their best friend. He got their confessions, then those eyes lost their warmth.

And the real man began to show.

Normally, Colin almost liked the guy. Todd didn’t ask stupid questions, he minded his own business, and he was a damn good shot.  

The guy was also a notorious ladies’ man. He’d slept with nearly every female cop in the precinct.

But he’d sure as hell better not be planning on letting his gaze drift to the doc.

“She’s off-limits, Brooks.” Better to go ahead and make that clear.

His partner just shrugged. “So she’s working the case. Big deal. We can still—“

Colin leaned forward. “No, I don’t think you get it. She’s off-limits.”

Those puppy-dog eyes blinked, and the light seemed to dawn. “Ah, got her marked already, huh, partner?”

No, he hadn’t marked her. Not yet. That would come later. Shifters always marked their mates.

Colin stiffened. Where the hell had that thought come from? The doc was not his mate.

Midnight Sins by Cynthia Eden

Midnight Sins (Midnight, #2)


Order a copy: Midnight Sins

Publisher:  Brava
Published:  December 1, 2008
Paperback:  301 pages

Rating:  4 stars


Cara Maloan doesn’t look like a monster. In fact, the gorgeous blond nightclub singer possesses heavenly attributes that makeAtlantadetective Todd Brooks sure there’s a higher power somewhere. But a twisted killer is leaving a trail of bodies in seedy hotel rooms across town. The male victims show no wounds-it’s as if the life was simply drained from them. And right now, mysterious Cara is Todd’s only suspect.

Cara knows it’s foolish to be so drawn to a man who thinks she’s a murderer. She also knows Detective Brooks would find the truth even harder to swallow. Cara is one of the Others, a race of powerful, paranormal creatures who live among humans. Cara’s particular abilities make men putty in her hands-all except this rugged, sexy-as-hell detective. But now someone, or something, has singled Cara out for serious payback…

As uneasy trust gives way to mind-blowing desire, Cara and Todd will go head-to-head with a killer whose mission is deeply personal, and who’s determined to serve up revenge that’s hotter than hellfire, and just as deadly…

Det. Todd Brooks was just learning the hard lesson that supernaturals truly exist.  Then a new murderer is in town, literally sucking the life out of men.  His best lead is the Cara Maloan.  She is not only beautiful, she is one of the others.   A demon…a succubus who gets power of sex.

Is she the killer or the woman of his dreams?  He better decide soon because someone is out to get her. 

This was an enjoyable story, but I am always a little put off when one of the main characters is an icubus or a succubus and the other main character is simply human.  I find it hard to just go with a love story when one of the characters uses love and sex as a source of power since it is their very nature, but I guess you could say the same thing about a vampire/human relationship. 

It was a good story aside from my personal prejudice against the succubus. 


Favorite Scene:

What would happen if he stopped asking so nicely?  A hot spurt of fire streaked though her gut.

Uh, oh.  She did not need to get turned on by a dark, rumbling voice.

She also didn’t need cops on her doorstep.

Cara released the chain and hurriedly jumped back as the door was shoved open.  Then the men stormed inside, and her heart pounded too fast as a shiver of fear skated down her spine.

It wasn’t the guns in heir hands that made her wary, though they were a definite concern.  Bullet wounds hurt like a bitch – she knew, she’d been shot once.  Not exactly a stellar memory.

No, it wasn’t the weapons that made her tremble.  It was the men.

The first guy, Detective Brooks, he was tall, a couple of inches over six feet, and leanly muscled.  There was power there, in the tight lines of his body, a strength that hung in the air around him, and damn but the guy was  handsome.  Sharp, clean lines defined his face.  A straight nose, a chiseled jaw and chin.  His top lip was a little too thin, but strangely sexy.  And his eyes, they were dark brown.  They looked…warm.

A deception, she was sure, but there was something about him…something hot.  Dark.  A curl of heat unfurled within her, and a rampant thought raced through her mind.  I want to taste him.  All of that wonderful power swirling just beneath his surface.  He’d be delicious.

The demon inside her trembled with hunger even as the woman fought to hold on to her control.

Midnight’s Master by Cynthia Eden

Midnight's Master (Midnight, #3)


Order a copy:  Midnight’s Master

Publisher:  Brava
Published:  July 1, 2009
Paperback:  352 pages

Rating:  5 stars


Tall, dark, and formidable, Niol Lapen is the last demon on earth most people would ask for a favor, yet the sexy little reporter who wanders into his club dares to do exactly that. Holly Storm already knows too much about his kind, and Niol has no wish to help her get in deeper over her head. But working alongside her may be the only way to stop a killer, even as it ignites a primal desire unlike anything he’s known.

Holly has seen firsthand what Niol is capable of, but that doesn’t frighten her nearly as much as her body’s instinctive reaction to him, or the wild, fierce passion that would tempt her to follow him through hell itself. Something evil and relentless is prowling the streets ofAtlanta. And as Holly’s search leads her into danger that even Niol could never have predicted, she’ll uncover a secret that could rip her world apart.

Someone is trying to get their hands on new reporter Holly Storm, but not if Niol has any say.  Especially since he wants want to get his hands (and other body parts) all over Holly. 

Niol is a very powerful level ten demon, and he plans to get to this killer and teach him to hunt in Niol’s city.  But he better to it before Dt. Gyth and partner, Todd Brooks arrest him first. 

This was a climatic end of the Midnight series, and not to be missed. 


Favorite Scene:

He lifted his hand.  Stroked her cheek.  Damn, but she was soft.  Leaning close, Niol told her, “Sweetheart, I warned you before about coming to my Paradise.”

There was no doubt others overheard his words.  With so many shifters skulking around the joint, a whisper would have been overheard.  Shifters and their annoyingly superior senses.

“Wh-what do you mean?”  The question came, husky and soft.  Ah, but he liked her voice.  He could all too easily imagine that voice, whispering to him as they lay amid a tangle of sheets.

He cupped her chin his hand.  A nice chin.  Softly rounded.  And those lips…the bottom was fuller than the top.  Just a bit.   So red.  Her mouth was slightly parted, open.

Waiting.

She stepped back, shaking her head.  “I don’t know what you think you’re doing, Niol—“

He stared down at her.  “Yes, you do.”  He caught her arms, wrapping his fingers around her and jerking Holly against him.  “I told you, the last time you came into my bar…”

Her eyes widened.  ”Niol…”

Oh, yeah, he liked the way she said his name.  She breathed it, tasted it.

His lips lowered toward hers.  “If you want to walk in Paradise, baby, then you’re gonna have to play with the devil.”

“No, I—“

He kissed her.  Hard.  Deep.  Niol drove his tongue right past those plump lips and took her mouth the way the beast inside him demanded.

She tasted like wine, and the more he sampled, the more he wanted.

Making Spirits Bright by F. Michaels, E. Bass, R. Noonan and N. Rossiter

Making Spirits Bright


ORDER A COPY: Making Spirits Bright

Publisher: Zebra
Publishing Date: October 25, 2011
Paperback: 424 pages

Rating: See individual stories for ratings


Secret wishes, sweet surprises, and gifts straight from the heart. Delight in this season’s most joyous presents with these four sparkling tales. . .

“Making Spirits Bright” by Fern Michaels

Melanie McLaughlin desperately wants to adopt two orphaned siblings and give them a real home for Christmas. A just-for-the-holiday marriage to Bryce Landry fits her plan perfectly. . .until unexpected sparks have Melanie dreaming of forever by his side. . .

“Runaway Christmas” by Elizabeth Bass

A glass of wine, lounging in pajamas, and catching up on movies—that’s Heidi Bogue’s idea of a perfect Christmas. Until her thirteen-year-old niece makes a surprise visit—and a snowstorm turns Heidi’s café into a community refuge. Now one handsome cop is giving Heidi plenty more reasons to celebrate. . .

“Home For Christmas” by Rosalind Noonan

Jo Truman needs a replacement Santa for her gift shop’s Christmas Eve party. She’ll do whatever it takes to convince lonely soldier Sam Norwood that he’s perfect for the part…and that the season for love is always. . .

“Christmas On Cape Cod” by Nan Rossiter

Maddie Carlson would do anything for her best friend. And helping Asa Coleman babysit a rambunctious puppy Christmas Eve night is her one chance to help the troubled teacher put his past to rest. . .and give the sweetest gift of all.


Making Spirits Bright by Fern Micheals. Melanie and Bryce had known each other as casual acquaintances. After seeing each other again at a Christmas party, they start dating and begin to fall in love. Melanie has just begun the paperwork to become an adoptive parent when she begins seeing Bryce so she doesn’t even mention it to him. She is told they can’t complete her paperwork until they meet her husband. She is devastated since she doesn’t have one. When two young siblings need an emergency foster home, Melanie and Bryce decide to get married and give them a home.

This started out as an enjoyable story, but it ended so quickly and abruptly that it was ruined for me. We were coasting along nicely, then in the last few pages we rushed through all the drama of the adoption agency, getting married and being together as a family. Now I might have gone with the quickie HEA ending if Bryce has harbored a crush on Melanie for years, but she wasn’t interested because she was a few years older than he was. I would go with idea that he jumped into marriage and a family with a woman he’s been secretly in love with for years. But not when they both indicated that they never gave the other much thought before. Bryce even wonders “Does she like coffee or tea?” and he’s jumping into a lifelong commitment to a woman and two children after 3 dates?

Rating: 3 Stars

Runaway Christmas by Elizabeth Bass. This story was just too busy!! From the description, you think that instead of the quiet Christmas that she’s looking forward to, Heidi is just getting her niece as Christmas surprise, but there is a lot more to it than just the niece. Her landlady falls down the stairs and ends upon the hospital leaving Heidi to take care of her little yappy dog…and then the au pair of her upstairs neighbor, who is out of the country (no discussion of where the father is), leaves her toddler charge with Heidi when she has to return to France to see her sick father….and wait, isn’t this supposed to be a romance…oh, yeah, here is some mentions of the gorgeous and shy Officer Patrick who stops by to check up on Heidi now and then and he smiles at her.

When I say too busy, I mean it was really too busy. I was tired at the end of it myself. Oh, and I forgot to mention the blackout that takes out most of Brooklyn and leaves Heidi, the niece, the dog, and little kid, and half the neighborhood living at the coffee shop for Christmas.

If you want a good cop/diner owner/Christmas story, try A Vampire for Christmas’s All I want for Christmas by Alexis Morgan. That had a lot more romance and a lot less crazy.

Rating: 3 stars

Home for Christmas – Roaslind Noonan. Now this was a very heartwarming, romantic, Christmas story I was looking for. Jo Truman lost her finance and the father of her unborn baby to a tragic ski accident. His best friend, Sam Norwood, left town and joined the army after he realized he was falling for Jo. After he is hurt in the war, he returns home and those burning embers start to rekindle their attraction after five years apart. This was a lovely story and the type of story with a little romance that I have been looking for in this book.

Rating: 4 stars

Christmas on Cape Cod by Nan Rossiter. This was another nice story. The book jacket description made more of an issue with the dog than necessary. Kid gets dog on Christmas morning – that was the big dog part of the story and if it was left of the back cover, it would have been more of a surprise/point of interest. This was more of a simple story of a man, his son, and the man’s long time “just friends” friend going to have Christmas with his parents. It little more romance would have been nice

Rating: 4 stars


Favorite Scene is from Home for Christmas:

“You’ve given me some good ideas,” she said. He reminded her of the Sam she used to know, solid and dependable. “It seemed hopeless, but there are some alternatives.”

““And if anyone can rally people around here, it’s you. Who else could have sold a dozen personalized signs in one day?”

“She snorted. “That’s because I know everyone and their brother.”

“Exactly.” His hand moved down her thigh, squeezing just above her knee

His touch felt so good. Maybe he meant it as a brotherly show of encouragement, but Jo’s body was taking it seriously, her heart beating like a wild bird in her chest, a poignant want stirring depe within. Oh, to be in Sam’s arms, to be falling through darkness in sync with him…the fantasy was to palpable in this moment, she had to call him on it.

“You know, when you touch a girl like that, it gets her thinking.”

“Like this?” His hand moved up her thigh, straying dangerously close to the sweet spot, but circling around her hip pocket to squeeze her bottom.

No brotherly intention there. It was definitely sexual, and the reality stirred hot embers of fear and excitement for Jo.

“Oh, now you’re really asking for it.” She turned to face him, hoping to read his expression.

The spark of passion in his eyes defied the shadows. “I’ve always been asking, Jo.”

Spiritus by Dana Michelle Burnett

Spiritus, a Paranormal Romance (Spiritus Series, Book #1)

ORDER A COPY: Spiritus, a Paranormal Romance (Spiritus Series, Book #1)

Self-Published
Release Date:  October 2011
E-book only:  146 Pages

Rating:  4 stars


Book #1 of the Spiritus series just .99!

A love that refuses to die…

“As I watched him vanish into a soft mist that faded away, I knew that he was no ordinary spirit…I knew that he was a dangerous entity that could be in some corner of another realm planning his revenge, but I also knew that I was hopelessly in love with him.”

When Becca moves into her ancestral home in Corydon, Indiana, her life takes a puzzling and thrilling turn when she meets the ghost haunting the halls. As the seductive spirit lures her closer and closer, she learns about her own past and starts to understand that some mistakes are meant to last.

Becca McAllister has always been different from other girls her age. Never part of the “in crowd”, Becca never really fit in anywhere. When her mother dies and her father moves them to the small town of Corydon, Indiana, Becca didn’t expect things to change.

But things do change when Becca accidentally makes contact with a one hundred and sixty year old ghost, Alastor Sinclair, that haunts the halls of her new home.

To Becca, Alastor is a seductive spirit that seems to see straight into her soul. To Alastor, Becca is what he was waited a century for–A second chance.

But the closer they get, the more Becca realizes that this isn’t the first time she and Alastor have known each other. Worse still, is she the one responsible for his death so long ago? And if so, did he come back for love or revenge?


When Becca McAllister moves to her new home in Coydon, Indiana, her new friends talk her into having a séance.  She doesn’t realize how life changing this will be. They contacted the spirit of Alastor Sinclair. Alastor recognizes Becca. He knew her as Becca in her former life – Becca Sinclair!   Alastor keeps watching and visiting her and they both begin the rekindle old feelings.

When gorgeous Jonah, the school hottie, starts to smile Becca’s way, it only adds Becca’s confusion and flames Alastor’s jealousy.   How does a girl choose between a new flesh and blood romance and a undying love in spirit only?

Before I write anything else, I have to apologize to Ms. Burnett.  I am guilty of being judgmental.  When I was asked to review this self-published story, it sounded interesting, but since it was self-published (and of the Young Adult category), I expected it to be of lesser quality than some of the paperbacks I have received from the major publishing houses.   I have read some of the “free” books offered at B&N and although those stories were okay, there was always something lacking in the story, characters and/or dialogue which I felt explained why it was free. 

In this case, I was soooo wrong! 

The characters in is this book were well written, the story drew me in immediately, and I have to admit a bit of frustration on my part since I was not aware this was Book #1.  When I hit the last page, I did a little screaming and I ran to the computer to see if I could find out when Book #2 was coming out.   See my interview with Dana Michelle Burnett for that answer and more.

The feelings which come through between Becca and Alastor have me racking my brain trying to figure out how to make a ghost whole again.  They were wonderful together.    Jonas is nice and all, but so far I’m an Alastor girl.

I would say the only character lacking in this book is the Dad.  He spends more time and attention on knick-knacks for the house and none concerned that his teenaged daughter spends all of her time alone in her room and often ignores her friends.   If, unlike the reader, you are not aware that she is spending all her time with her ghost boyfriend, she  would come off as a troubled, possibly suicidal teen.   Way to pay attention Dad!

At a cost of only $.99, it is well worth the investment.

Received a copy courtesy of the author.  Thank you!


Go to Interviews and Giveaways to find out more about Dana Michelle Burnett, and enter to win an e-book copy of Spiritus. No age restrictions!!

Interview with Dana Michelle Burnett


Favorite Scene:

He was touching me and he wasn’t disappearing.  I wanted to cry.  I wanted to throw myself into his arms.  I wanted to slap at him.

“Why did you ever come back?”  I choked. 

Alastor’s own eyes were shining with unshed tears; his lips trembled as he caressed my face.  “Oh my Becca, I have waited so long for this moment.  I would have traded my soul to hell just to touch you again and now I am selfish enough to still want more.”

I closed my eyes. I was trembling under his fingers, but savoring the feeling of his icy touch.  It was real, it was solid.  I wanted to reach out to him, to touch him in some way, but I knew that he would just disappear.

I forced myself to take one faltering step back, “Alastor, I can’t keep doing this.  It’s driving me crazy.”

Walking away, I felt the tears sliding down my cheeks.  I glanced back when I reached the door to the school, expecting to see that he had vanished, but there he was staring back at me.

I wanted to go back to him, but instead I brushed my tears away.  I opened the door and went back inside the school.  Ally and Billie were there waiting with their arms crossed.

“Someone’s been keeping a secret.”  Billie declared with a smirk.

“What to you mean?”  I stammered, trying to blink away the remaining tears.

Ally playfully shoved my shoulder, “Come on, out with it.  Who was that guy?”

“What guy?”

Billie rolled her eyes and jerked her chin toward the door.  “That guy you were just talking to outside.”

The world lurched sickeningly to the left as I realized what she meant.

“You saw him?”  I asked.

Ally and Billie exchanged confused glances.

“It’s not like you two were hiding or anything.”  Ally accused, “So who is he?

My mouth fell open in disbelief.  They could see him.  He had been strong enough even they could see him.  How was that possible?  I glanced back at the trees again, but he was gone.

Her Dark Knight by Sharon Cullen

 Her Dark Knight


ORDER A COPYHer Dark Knight

Publisher: Carina Press
Publishing Date: November 28, 2011
e-book only: 239 pages

Rating: 3.5 stars


Madelaine Alexander is on a mission. When her boss sends her to the hottest nightclub in town to meet with the owner, she won’t be deterred, even if that means standing in line for fifty-eight minutes in torturous heels while she’d rather be home in her pj’s with a bowl of popcorn.

A Knight of the Templar, Christien Chevalier was given immortality along with the responsibility of protecting the treasure of the Templars. He’s been unwavering in his task for centuries until his one true love—who died seven hundred years ago—shows up in his club, demanding his attention.

Christien couldn’t protect Madelaine when they first fell in love. She was married to a lord and he was simply a knight. Now, through some unknown miracle, she stands before him again and they have a second chance. But Christien fears that Madelaine is being used as a pawn in a dangerous game, a game of good versus evil that could affect all of mankind…


Let me first state that this was a well written story and I couldn’t put it down.

 That being said, I have to admit that it was as depressing as it was enjoyable.  We know simply from reading the jacket that Christien and Madelaine cannot be together when they first met since she is married to the lord of the castle and he is a knight.  We also know that Madelaine was killed young.  BUT in addition to this, Madelaine’s husband is a vicious sadist who takes pleasure in humiliating and raping her.  And, in addition to that, Lucian, her husband’s trusted advisor and castle priest, lusts for Madelaine and when her husband isn’t torturing her, Lucian is constantly trying to scare and molest her.   

Understanding that their first meeting in 1309 was not a happy time, what makes it most depressing is that instead of just learning all this horror of Madelaine’s first life in the beginning of the story and then moving onto the current day situation, the chapters dedicated to her prior life are interspersed throughout the book, and after spending a chapter in the present day with Christien and Madelaine trying to work through the issues of her reincarnation and the current dangers to her life, we get thrown back into the past to learn some new horror of her past life.

The way the story is merged, definitely heightens the suspense which continuously builds with the separate present day and past life stories, but reading of the horror that would be the life that a woman would have to endure in 1309, makes me happy to be living in the 21st Century, annoying cell phones or not.

I gave it 3.5 stars as a compromise for the 4 stars I would give to the gripping storyline, and the 3 stars I wanted to give since the story depressed me so much.


Favorite Scene:

His gaze slid to her hand still resting above her pounding heart. “I frightened you.”

“No.” She lowered her hand. “Well, maybe a little.”

“There is no need to be frightened of me.”

She wasn’t sure she was frightened of him. It was more like she was frightened of her reaction to him. Which made no sense.

“You break my heart with your fear, Madelaine.”

He spoke as if they knew each other. But they didn’t. She swore they’d never met and yet…She sensed they did know each other. More than their brief encounter the night before. It was as if she knew him in ways she shouldn’t.

Suddenly he as right there, so close his suit coat brushed against her blouse. She stared into those light gray eyes that seemed so familiar.

“Have we met before?” she asked.

He pulled back as if startled. “Excuse me?”

“I’m sorry.” She looked away, her cheeks heating in embarrassment. “It’s just…You look familiar.”

He touched her cheek, his thumb feathering across her jaw, causing goose bumps to race up her arm and her breath to catch. His gaze fell to her lips while his thumb continued its lazy exploration of her cheek and jaw. Lainie swallowed, her legs suddenly weak. If she didn’t have too much pride, she would have leaned against him for support.

Suddenly his hand was gone and he stepped back. His jaw muscle clenched and his eyes narrowed. “Perhaps I too thought you looked familiar.”

“Do I?”

“You remind me of someone I knew a long time ago. Someone I met in France.” He watched her closely. His tone was accusing as if he didn’t much like the person he’d known in France.

“I’ve never been to France.”

He studied her for such a long time she became uneasy. “Not you then, eh?”

She attempted a laugh to soothe the tension coming off him, but feared she failed miserably. “I wish. I’d love to visit France.”

The Guardian by Sherrilyn Kenyon

The Guardian (Dark-Hunter, #21; Dream-Hunter, #5)


ORDER A COPY: The Guardian (Dream-Hunter)

Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperback
Published:  November 1, 2011
Paperback:  345 pages

Rating:  5 Stars +  a big hug for Seth.   


Dream-Hunter Lydia has been charged with the most sacred and dangerous of missions: To descend into the Nether Realm and find the missing god of dreams before he betrays the secrets that could kill her and her kind. What she never expects is to be taken prisoner by the Realm’s most vicious guardian…

Seth’s time is running out. If he can’t hand over the entrance to Olympus, his own life and those of his people will be forfeit. No matter the torture, Seth hasn’t been able to break the god in his custody. Then there’s the beautiful Dream-Hunter Lydia: She isn’t just guarding the gates of Olympus—she’s holding back one of the world’s darkest powers. If she fails, an ancient curse will haunt the earth once more and no one will be safe. But evil is always seductive…


Lydia Tsakali is willing to go into Azmodea, a hell realm under the control of Noir, to save the dream god, Solin.  He raised her.  He means everything to her.   

When Seth, the Guardian of Azmodea, catches Lydia trying to free Solin, he knows she is the key to breaking Solin and getting the key to the gates of Olympus for Noir.  Seth has no love to Noir, but he is willing to do anything to end his own torture, even hold Lydia hostage until Solin returns with the key. 

After centuries of abuse from everyone around him, he is not willing to trust anyone again. But Lydia’s gentleness and kindness to Seth starts to win him over. 

I knew when I read the small blurb on the Sherrilyn Kenyon’s website months ago, I was going to like these characters.  Sherrilyn Kenyon writes such moving stories of tortured souls that your heart just breaks for them, and you can feel how the smallest act of kindness means so much to them.  *sniff*sniff*  

I was slightly unhappy when Lydia starts pulling a little bit of that girl b.s., being miffed and giving him the silent treatment.  The guy has been living in hell (actually living in hell) and being tortured for centuries.  Cut him some slack with the attitude!  

This is a Dream-Hunter novel, and of the Hunter series, the Dream-Hunters are not usually my favorite, but this was such an enjoyable story and I just want to give Seth a big hug. 


Favorite Scene:

Don’t look at her

He heard his inner sanity and yet he couldn’t resist glancing over his shoulder to catch her staring at his back from where she sat cross-legged on his bed.  With her elbows braced on her knees, she rested her chin on her folded hands.  He had no idea why he found that adorable, but he did.

“What are you doing?”  he asked her.

“Trying to read through your big head.”

“Why?”

She gave him a droll look.  “Oh, I don’t know.  Maybe because I’m bored out of my friggin’ mind and there’s really nothing else to do since I’m not sleepy.  What do you do for entertainment? Other than surf online porn, that is.”

“Porn?”  She used a lot of words he didn’t have a definition for.

“You know?  Pornography?  Naked women showing off their happy places to lonely men who can’t get dates?  Or, in your case, guys who live under rocks and never get to see a normal woman’s happy place.”

He was both appalled and intrigued by what she described.  Did women really do such a thing?  And you could actually see it?

Of course, during his brief time in the human realm, people had been very open sexually.  Obviously, they still were.

“I’m not surfing porn.”  He didn’t realize he could do that, but now that she brought it up…

Where would he go to find it?  He hadn’t had the computer long.  Only a little more than a week.  He wouldn’t have even known they existed but for one of the slug demons who’d mentioned it while he was questioning Solin.

Once he got back to his room, he’d manifested one and it’d taken him awhile to figure out how to use his powers to make it connect to the human world.

The rest of it, though…

Some special kind of sadistic demon must have invested this damn thing.

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