Release Day Review: Be Fairy Game (Starfig investigation #2) by Meghan Maslow

release day review

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41003166-be-fairy-game?from_search=true

Blurb
When a simple ‘find & fetch’ case throws private investigator Twig Starfig and newly-minted wizard, Quinn Broomsparkle, into the middle of an EBI murder investigation, it’s just another day in the Elder Realm.

If murder were Twig’s only problem, he’d be the luckiest half-dragon in the land. Murder he can handle. Fulfilling his promise to his scheming, power-hungry father to run for a seat on Lighthelm’s city council? Meh, he’d rather face a demon with a toothache.

On top of their case going sideways, and Twig running for a council seat he really doesn’t want, Twig and Quinn are forced to face some unpleasant realities about their budding romance, while still learning how to handle the wizard-familiar bond they now share. Throw in a red fury with abysmal taste in boyfriends, a ghost pirate-parrot who drinks too much, a murderer who will stop at nothing to get what they want, a host of new friends and enemies, and you’ve got a situation where no one is safe and everyone is Fairy Game

Review
This book carries on from the end of the first book, By Fairy means or Foul. In my opinion you do need to read (or listen the audiobook book is great) to book 1. I’d forgotten how much I love these characters, and I do mean Characters. Twig is a dragon shifter, Quinn a Wizard and Bill the daemon Red Fury (he’s my favourite). In this book we have a murder mystery, political intrigue and family drama. There is so much going on in the story. It keeps quite a pace without losing it’s integrity. Meghan Maslow has built a wonderful world which just keeps on getting better with each book. There are a lot of new characters with their own quirky ways that make it so fun to read. As well as ones from the first book. Twig and Quinn’s complicated relationship is continuing to build, Twig is Quinn’s familiar and in this story they struggle with whether to mate or not. Such a difficult situation when you’re already bound together in a different way. The murder mystery is handled quite well. Kept me guessing, and I like that about it. Someone is also trying to kill Twig’s father (who I’ve slowly warmed to). That looks like one of the threads that will carry on to book 3, because for me there are too many loose ends for the series not to carry on. I do hope this story comes out on audiobook as well.

4 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Coming Soon! Somebody to Die For Series: Requiem Inc.: Book 3 Author: Kris T. Bethke

 

 

Release Date: September 4, 2018

 

Dreamspinner

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/somebody-to-die-for-by-kris-t-bethke-9839-b

 

Blurb

Dying is easy. New love is terrifying.
Avery Wagner quit ghostwalking when he lost his beloved anchor to cancer. Now teaching others who have the ability, he’s beginning to live again—but he’s not looking for another lover, not now, maybe not ever.
But then he meets Jameson… younger, talented, dedicated, almost perfect, even though his mouth sometimes opens ahead of his brain. And Jameson wants Avery desperately, though he’ll settle for friendship if he can’t have more.
When an emergency demands they work together in the field, Avery discovers just how perfect Jameson is. But he had a perfect love once before, and he’s scared to even consider that he might have a chance at another. Can he trust Jameson with his newly healing heart?

Review

I love this series so much! This is hard for me to differentiate – because I can’t help but compare this to the previous two books, which I really loved…
On the one hand: I loved the world Bethke has given us – the ghosts, the afterlife, the alternate way of thinking… I was so PSYCHED that Avery gets a happy ending… I loved the idea of May/December – especially in this long lived world…

In the end – I didn’t like Avery. Ugh. He bothered me the entire time. I appreciated that he loved Luke and that was a big deal but man – Jameson is soooo awesome and I’m not sure Avery appreciated him like he should have.

That’s absolutely my humble opinion – obviously – but I kept wanting a grand gesture that proved Avery got what a treat Jameson was. The power balance in this couple felt off and I didn’t feel like it got it’s own footing by the end. Maybe if it’d been a bit longer…

Anyhow, I loved seeing the guys from books 1 and 2 – especially Derek – *sigh…

Fans of this series will want to read this and you don’t have to have read the others to enjoy this one but it won’t mean as much to you if you start with this one.

For the writing and the world building I’d give this a 5 for the romance a 3 – so 4 of 5 stars overall.

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Coming Soon: Hex and Candy (Series: Strange Bedfellows) by: Ashlyn Kane

August 21!

Dreamspinner Presents:
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/hex-and-candy-by-ashlyn-kane-9797-

Blurb
True love’s kiss can break the curse. But then what?

Cole Alpin runs a small-town candy store. He visits his grandmother twice a week. And sometimes he breaks curses.

Leo Ericson’s curse is obvious right away, spiderwebbing across his very nice body. Though something about it worries Cole, he agrees to help—with little idea of what he’s getting into.

Leo is a serial monogamist, but his vampire ex has taken dating off the table with his nasty spell, and Leo needs Cole’s companionship as much as his help. When the hex proves to be only the beginning of his problems, Leo seeks refuge at Cole’s place. Too bad magic prevents him from finding refuge in Cole’s arms.

Cole’s never had a boyfriend, so how can he recognize true love? And there’s still the matter of the one responsible for their troubles in the first place…

Review
I liked the premise for this story. The idea that there are witches around with different talents who are discrete around the ‘mundanes’ or ‘muggles’ as they call them. As well as vampires, werewolves, elves etc. Leo comes to Cole for help. He had a brief relationship with a vampire who left him cursed. A curse that is seriously messing up his love life. Cole knows that only true loves kiss will break the curse but can he be the one. The realisation that there is more the world than he ever realised was a bit of a shock for Leo. Bring into this budding new love Cole’s meddling grandmother and Leo’s friend succumbing to a vampire and you have an entertaining story. My favourite character was Cole’s familiar Nineveh, she would say exactly what she thought. Personally I thought it ended abruptly but if it’s the start of a series with Cole and Leo maybe it was the best place. Although I wouldn’t mind reading more about about Leo’s friend Jimmy and his Vampire.

3.5 of stars out of 5


Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Retro Read: Blood and Rain(Book 1) by Shira Anthony

Blurb

Adrien Gilbert has spent several lifetimes searching for the love he lost. Born in the 1800s into a clan of fabled vampire hunters, Adrien once wanted nothing more than to tend his family’s vineyard in southern France or read a good book. But Adrien’s peaceful existence ends abruptly when his older brother, François, is murdered. Bound by his hunter’s oath, Adrien sets out on a path that will forever change his life when he agrees to execute his brother’s killer, the vampire Charles Duvalier.

After months chasing the elusive Charles, Adrien reluctantly makes a bargain with Nicolas Lambert, an ancient vampire. Adrien will escort Nicolas to Paris for his marriage to a rival clanswoman, and Nicolas will help Adrien find Charles. Nicolas’s quiet strength and gentle heart soon convince Adrien that Nicolas is nothing like the vampires he has sworn to destroy. As the wedding date draws nearer, a force intent on destroying the fragile peace between the vampire clans threatens to tear apart both the vampire realm and the world of the hunters. To secure both past and future for those he loves, Adrien must find a way to stop the looming war between hunters and vampires. But first he’ll have to let Nicolas go.

Review

First, I think anyone interested in this series should be PSYCHED to know that all 3 books are finally released. I didn’t touch this because I didn’t want to be in cliff-hanger torture while waiting for the series to finish. So…. Once I saw book 3 released I said – at last! – I can begin this series!

Second, this is Shira Anthony. So… you know you best be prepared for in depth world building, complex characters, lots of angst, and pain, and maybe some not-so perfect MCs.

I think, as someone who has enjoyed her other series – Blue Note and Mermen of Ea – that this (so far) seems to follow in their footsteps. Book one is all about the back story and world building and introducing us to all the myriad characters. Right now my interest in piqued with Charles and Francois more than Adrien – but time will tell…

I’m not a big fan – ok I hate – cliff hangers, and I’m actually more attracted to short stories than I am to epic multi book series – but – I’m looking forward to starting book 2. I do love Shira’s writing style and though I’m not loving the flashbacks and there was a lot of the time that I was really confused as to who was where and when but… – I love me some biting and vamps who like biting and all the magic – so….

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Release Day: Star-Crossed Lover (Dreamcatchers #2) by Liv Olteano

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/star-crossed-lover-by-liv-olteano-9740-b

Blurb

A Dreamcatchers Tale

A love worth crossing the stars for.

Taka has been a dreamcatcher and part of Team 32 for over six decades, but nobody has tempted him like Ginger—a dancer at club Zee. Too bad dreamcatchers aren’t allowed to have meaningful relationships with regular people. His willpower proves a finite resource, though, when a mission at the club means spending much more time around Ginger.

Ginger’s infatuation with Taka is unwavering. When he proves to have some paranormal skills of his own, he earns himself a place on the team—if he wants it. His decision will change his life—not to mention Taka’s—irrevocably.

But living in the now could prove an issue for a man who has as much history as Taka. Can Ginger’s determination help him make his way into Taka’s heart?

Review

I chose this based on a whole lot of potential that I glimpsed with book 1 – unfortunately it didn’t come to fruition.

The author has created an interesting world with soul sucking demons and people with long lives who use spider magic to stop them. Sounds intriguing and mystical and magical right? It’s surprisingly flat and hard to get interested in.

Part of my problem with this might be the first person narrative which is not my favorite. The writing felt very stilted and awkward a lot of the time and the dialog inauthentic.

Another of my concerns was the fact that Taka comes off as really flat despite his decades of life and adventures and Ginger comes off as a caricature. We could have delved into the “star crossed nature” of our lovers, but we don’t. We could have explored Taka’s past love, but we don’t. We barely meet/understand Ginger at all and then- pow – they’re crushing on one another and bonding.

I never felt these two connect and their romance did not ever feel real to me.

I wanted to like this – but it just fell flat for me- both the romance and the action against the monsters. If you enjoyed book 1 you might enjoy this, if book one didn’t work for you, this won’t either. IMHO book 1 was better executed.  I don’t think this stands well on it’s own and should be read as part of a series.

2.75 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Audiobook: Consorting With Dragons by Sera Trevor

audiobookreview

Audible Link

https://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/Consorting-with-Dragons-Audiobook/B07F3BGR2N?ref=a_a_library_c4_libItem_3_B07F3BGR2N&pf_rd_p=ae76b2bb-e63d-4a67-b357-dab3dee05ca1&pf_rd_r=XRAHEZ2Z33VXAZ7P1V4V&

Blurb

Lord Jasen of Grumhul, an impoverished young nobleman, has come to the Draelands to find a rich husband to help pay his father’s debts. To the shock of everyone, he ends up attracting the attention of King Rilvor himself and the dragons who control the magic in the land.
Becoming royalty wasn’t something Jasen either expected or wanted, but he can’t control his growing feelings for the kind and handsome king. Scheming factions at Court conspire to keep him from Rilvor’s side, and now, Jasen has to decide if the chance at true love with Rilvor is worth the burden of being the husband of a king.
Contains mature themes.

Review

 

First let me say, that I will absolutely be looking for this author in the future and second, that I had no idea Philip Alces had that accent (his own? Dunno… but it was wonderful!)

 

However, I didn’t love this story.

 

I did love the premise – Cinderella with dragons. I didn’t love that Jasen was a “slut” before we got to meet Rilvor and the steam factor in this is so low. Maybe that’s hypocritical – but my own taste would have been keep to one theme or the other. Keep Jasen and the sex scenes chaste or give us some hot smexy times!

 

I never read the “short version” and only listened to this, so I can’t compare, but I really do wish we’d seen more from Rilvor’s POV. I also hope that , since so much time went into world building, we’ll see more from this world in the future.

 

The writing was really good and as far as I could tell so was the editing.

 

As I mentioned before Philip Alces nailed all the accents and really put the listener in a great frame to appreciate this story/time in place. The secondary characters were good, though some of them I knew better than the 2nd MC.

 

All in all I thoroughly enjoyed this and found myself happily listening without a desire to skip ahead. Well-done!

 

 

3.75 (rounded to 4) of 5 stars overall

 

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Copy Purchased for Review

Release Day Review: Soul Bond by J.S. Harker

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/soul-bond-by-js-harker-9716-b

Blurb

Stealing his heart.

As a thief and a warlock, Noah survives by using his wit and charm to prey on the privileged. His dangerous criminal boss wants an enchanted dagger belonging to a family of wealthy mages, including their pampered—but handsome—son, Ben. Failing to complete the job will be hazardous to Noah’s survival.

Noah bumps into Ben at a lavish party, and as soon as they meet, the connection’s undeniable, and it goes much further than ordinary attraction. Their bond reaches into their souls, entwining and changing their magic.

Which Noah thinks he can use to get to the dagger. After all, he isn’t sure this soul bond Ben seems so obsessed with is even real.

He also doesn’t count on being caught red-handed…. Or falling in love.

Review

The magic part of this story was wonderful and very satisfying. I loved how the author depicted the “entwining” and how powerful they become when they work together.

I didn’t feel their personal connection as strongly and I wasn’t always sure of the “rules” in this “world”.

I think – if this becomes a series – more information on how things work and spending more time with the emotional connection would help me warm to the series more.

It was still a lot of fun and I recommend it to fans of soul mates and magic!

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Audiobook: Familiar Angel by Amy Lane Narrated by Gomez Pugh

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/familiar-angel-by-amy-lane-8950-b

Blurb

One hundred and forty years ago, Harry, Edward, and Francis met an angel, a demon, and a sorceress while escaping imprisonment and worse! They emerged with a new family—and shapeshifting powers beyond their wildest dreams.
Now Harry and his brothers use their sorcery to rescue those enslaved in human trafficking—but Harry’s not doing so well. Pining for Suriel the angel has driven him to take more and more risks until his family desperately asks Suriel for an intervention.
In order for Suriel to escape the bindings of heaven, he needs to be sure enough of his love to fight to be with Harry. Back when they first met, Harry was feral and angry, and he didn’t know enough about love for Suriel to justify that risk. Can Suriel trust in Harry enough now to break his bonds of service for the boy who has loved his Familiar Angel for nearly a century and a half?

Review

(Book reviewed here previously)

I’m having a tough time reviewing this.

On the one hand, I enjoyed it – as I do nearly every Amy book I’ve ever read, and like those of hers I’ve read a million times.

Amy is very good at giving us clear, crisp writing with just the right amount of show versus tell. The back story for our boys is delivered in a bits and pieces with only small amounts of flash backs to fill in the gaps.

We’re shown the budding relationships between all 3 boys with telling glimpses rather than overt smacks to the face. Sometimes, however, the subtlety got a bit too murky.

It’s obvious that Suriel and Harry are falling/have fallen for one another, but I really missed that moment when it happened … and the reasons why they have to be apart are a little vague and I wasn’t always sure why the things that happened … did.

I loved the cat-ness in this story! The back and forth and the human manifestations of the feline persona were priceless!

The chemistry between Harry and Suriel isn’t as “warm” as some of her other couples, and – in fact – if we get to see the other brother’s stories – I’m sensing a lot more heat between them and their partners already than I did between Suriel and Harry. Instead, theirs felt more like a blanket than a fire – if you know what I mean. They wanted one another, and the passion was talked about – but I don’t know that I felt it much.

I absolutely loved the world building and the “moral of the story” with big Cass and all the “powers” and magic.

I’m really looking forward to the next books in the series!

4 of 5 stars

Audio

I Loved Gomez’ interpretation of this!  He was easy to listen to and made me love the story even more than I had when reading it.  I definitely think our mood influence our opinions of things and I must have been feeling better this time around because I loved this – full stop!  Highly recommended with no reservations!

5 of 5 stars

Overall 5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Recent Release: Sheltering His Mate (Cackle Lands #1) by Cree Storm

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40122341-sheltering-his-mate?from_search=true

Blurb

When Miller and his brother ran for their lives from the alpha of their hyena cackle, he had no idea he would find sanctuary with the enemy or the fact that his mate would be the alpha of that cackle.
Orson wasn’t any different from any other shifter. He had yearned for a mate since knowing he had one out there in the world. He just didn’t expect him to come to him in the dark of night, running for his life not just from an evil alpha, but a demon trying to take his very soul.
Can the two become one before Miller’s past catches up to him? Or will Orson have to sell his soul to the devil to keep his mate safe?

 

Review

Looking for something fun? Like shifters? Tired of wolf shifters? Like some hot smexy times? This is for you!

This is a great new series with a slightly different take on the shifter theme but with all the good stuff you want in a shifter romance.

We’ve got fated mates, an evil mage and some unfinished business leading us to the next book.

I urge you to ignore the not-so-great cover and give this a shot!

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Purchased for Review

Release Day Review: The Night Owl and the Insomniac By j. leigh bailey

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-night-owl-and-the-insomniac-by-j-leigh-bailey-9681-b

Blurb

A Shifter U Tale
Long nights lead to intrigue… and infatuation.
Chronically ill with a mysterious condition, Yusuf “Joey” Franke escapes his smothering family and doctors by moving halfway across the country to enroll in Cody College. Not long after arriving on campus, some of his symptoms disappear, only to be replaced by debilitating insomnia. Joey spends his nights wandering the halls of his dormitory and hanging out with gregarious and affable Owen, who works the night shift.
When he suddenly shifts from a sick college kid to a massive Asiatic lion, Joey discovers another side to Cody College—it’s a haven for shifters like himself… and like Owen, a part-time great horned owl. And being a shifter is hereditary, which means his parents have some explaining to do.
When Joey and Owen investigate, they discover more than they bargained for—a family deception, a dangerous enemy with international connections, and a love that might be too new to survive the backlash.

Review

 

This is such a fun series! If you’re a shifter lover – like me! – you’ve already been enjoying this series. If you’re new… well, I’d say this is as good as any to start with – but maybe go to book one – at least…

 

In any case, book 2 was my favorite and I LOVED it – this had big shoes to fill and … it didn’t – but it was still real damn good! I loved the whole “I don’t know I’m a shifter” and though the “WTF? How did he not know…” factor was pretty high – the author did a pretty good job explaining.

 

I thought the romance was a bit weaker here (than in the other books), but the personal growth was bigger. The humor was pretty great, and all in all this was a good addition to a great series.

 

4.25 rounded to 4.5 of 5 stars

 

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review