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

Recent Release: Pyro’s Accidental Shooting (Hounds of the Hunt #2) by Toni Griffin

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39792113-pyro-s-accidental-shooting?from_search=true

Blurb

Hounds of the Hunt: Book 2
PRECEDING BOOK: Archie’s Accidental Kidnapping
NEXT BOOK: Jordan’s Accidental Adoption

Winter in Melbourne makes the hunt for supernatural beings gone bad harder than usual during the cold foggy nights. A chill has settled deep in Pyro’s bones. One he can’t shake loose. More than anything, Pyro wishes for a heart mate of his own to come home to after the long nights of a hunt, one who understands him and his desires, who can hold him together when he needs to let go.

Life has always been planned out for Callum. His family of cops expected him to be a cop, so that’s what he became. But Callum isn’t so sure about being a detective for the Melbourne police. Not many people understand the demands of being a cop, and it’s been the downfall of more than one of his relationships. Why should his chance of loving someone get sidelined for a job he isn’t even sure he wants?

One fateful encounter on a fog-shrouded night changes both their worlds forever. Now Pyro just has to convince his heart mate they belong together while Callum tries to come to terms with a world he never knew existed and does his best to make up for accidentally shooting the unusual and intriguing hellhound.

Review

 

This is a fun and funny paranormal series centered around hell-hounds who are on earth to fight supernaturals who break the law.

I enjoyed book 1 quite a bit (https://openskyebookreviews.com/archies-accidental-kidnapping-hounds-of-the-hunt-1-by-toni-griffin/) and this was good as well, though the sex was maybe a bit too much and detracted from the sweet/cute romance.

If you’re in the mood for something light, unique and sexy – this is for you!

4 of 5 stars

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Copy Purchased for Review

Time to go Dark: Dax’s Desire (Avanti Chronicles Book 5) by Hannah Walker

Good Reads Link
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29873466-dax-s-desire?from_search=true

Blurb
The Avanti have made their way to Berinias, the capital and heart of Landran society. Not only is it King Kastain’s home ground, but it’s the seat of the Conclave’s power.
Dax finally gets to see Kastain in all his glory— regal, confident, powerful and downright sexy. As events unfold, Dax and Kastain realize everything happening with the Derin, with Martellon, Nestor and Teriva, is linked. Their enemies draw closer and the plots and machinations of the Conclave deepen. They just need to work out who is behind it all and what they hope to gain.
Kastain finds himself turning to Dax, the one person he seems to be able to count on more than anything. The bond between the two leaders is stronger than they expected, and they long for rare times alone so they can explore it. Instead their time is taken up trying to work out which Chieftains they can count on and who is attempting to undermine them at every turn.
When plots and betrayals run deep within the heart of the capital, who will succeed and who will pay the ultimate price?

Review
And the storyline continues!

With each of the previous books we have seen the political posturing of all the groups and in this story it all centers around the King , the Capital and the Avanti. Some questions are answered and more are asked. And while all of this is going on another of the Avanti finds the love of his life.

King Kastain and Avanti leader Dax are both strong personalities yet when they get the chance to be alone they really are both soft and caring men. With all the political intrigue weaved through the story there is also comic relief and also truly hot sex scenes.

Many questions are answered but nothing is truly solved. The story does end in a HEA for the couple, but those of us who are following series are waiting impatiently for the next book and the next set of clues to the ongoing storyline.

5 of 5 stars

Copy Purchased for Review

Audiobook: The Solstice Prince By SJ Himes Narrated by Joel Leslie

Audible Link
https://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/The-Solstice-Prince-Audiobook/B07CH442X7?ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_1&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=ZY1S6912HW5YT2E02T5Y&

Blurb
Rescued from slavers, healer novice Jaime Buchanan finds himself alone and free in Pyrderi, a kingdom of magic, mythical creatures, and a culture as open and kind as his homeland was cruel and close-minded.

Despite his rescue, Jaime is not left without scars, both mental and physical. Traumatized by his experience and hiding his gift, Jaime struggles to earn his place in the kitchens of Angharad Palace, the heart of Taliesin City. His former life as a student of the healing arts leaves him at a disadvantage in the kitchens, and his damaged state is becoming more apparent by the day.

One day, when necessity and fate intervene, Jaime meets someone unexpected—Prince Maxim, youngest son of the Pyrderian king, a sword master and a devastatingly kind man. Unaccustomed to powerful people with compassion and heart, Jaime flees. A cascade of events reveals Jaime’s hidden talents of healing, and he finds himself not in chains, but at the beginning of a new life.

This swift change of fortune opens Jaime up to new possibilities, including a smitten prince who cautiously courts Jaime, easing him away from his fears and reminding him that compassion and love can make him strong. The winter solstice is quickly approaching, and Prince Maxim shows Jaime the enjoyment and excitement to be found in a land that embraces the ice and cold, and the mysteries of all things magical. He learns to see the man under the royal mantle, and Maxim is more than even Jaime suspected.

The winter solstice is nigh when tragedy strikes, and Jaime learns that his past of grief and sorrow can be a pillar of strength for his solstice prince. If there is one thing that Jaime believes above all else, it is in the healing power of love.

Review
(Book reviewed here previously by Beth)

SJ Himes has created a Cinderella romance. A young man who has been enslaved is rescued and brought to the palace. He catches the eye of the young prince and they slowly develop a romance between the two of them.

The story meanders through the 2 MC’s daily lives as SJ Himes builds a world where what’s acceptable in one kingdom is not in the next. We are teased with mythical creatures, the magic of healing and the final circle of life. It is also a slow build up to an intimate scene between Jamie and Maxim, and it is much more sweet than hot

A fairy tale to allow you to dream of a happily ever after.

Review by Morgan

I agree with Beth. This is a light, fluffy romance with a lot of heart.
Our characters develop personally and as a couple fairly rapidly over this short-ish story but there is a lot of magic and world building as well.

I look forward to more from this world.

Audio

Joel Leslie turns what I would consider to be a good story into an AMAZING story. He breathes in more depth and emotion to the characters as well as adds a layer of uniqueness that I didn’t feel in the written words.

Not to say the story was bad – it wasn’t – but Joel just adds to the overall enjoyment by a factor of 10!

Highly recommended in this format!

5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

Audiobook: Dragon’s Heat (City Dragons Series, Book 1) by Lisa Oliver; Narrated by Sean Crisden

audiobookreview

Audible Link

https://www.audible.com/pd/Erotica-Sexuality/Dragons-Heat-Audiobook/B07C9ZR9XY?ref=a_search_c3_lProduct_1_1&pf_rd_p=e81b7c27-6880-467a-b5a7-13cef5d729fe&pf_rd_r=WF804XH5TG09H67DKAWF&

Blurb

Jon Erskine had made a good life for himself as one of the top forensic accounts and systems analysts in the country. He doesn’t mind working with paranormal clients – after all, he’s a shifter himself. However, he could do without all the slurs and derogatory comments. Not all shifters are wolves, bears, or other predators. Still, his expertise and reputation is solid, and Jon is more than capable of holding his own. That is, until Dirk Hollingsworth runs from his office.
Dirk is running out of time. He has to find out who’s been stealing from his company before his father turns up for his wedding in three weeks time. Acting on the recommendation of a friend, Dirk turns to Jon, or at least thinks about it. That is, until he catches the man’s scent in the doorway of his office and does a runner. Not the proudest moment for one of the proudest of all shifters, but Dirk has a responsibility to his clan and catching the tantalizing scent of a dog isn’t going to change anything. Or so he thinks.

Review

(Book reviewed here previously)

This was a really sweet, funny, and sexy story of a pair of fated mates making the other “better”. Sort of a “Romeo and Juliet” thing again where the two shouldn’t mate but – of course – they have to!

There is very little angst, a fair amount of smexy times and some nice feelz.

Highly Recommended to fans of the author, shifter romances and low angst/fated mate stories.

3.5 of 5 stars

Audio

Sean Crisden is awesome! I was so glad to see he was the narrator for this. Such fun! He does a great job with alpha characters and I thought he handled the emotions, the various characters and humor wonderfully.

4.5 of 5 stars

Overall 4 of 5 stars

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Copy Purchased for Review

Recent Release: Bad Seed by Gareth Vaughn

Good Reads Link
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38901778-bad-seed?from_search=true

Blurb
Dane’s a Decrypter down on his luck — after accidentally dispatching the wrong creature, he’s sent to a small town where the cryptids he hunts are sparse. Crypt Coffee becomes his business front, but instead of a thrilling new mission on the side, he’s stuck sending ghosts back to where they came from. Dane can annoy customers, at least, and tries to scare off Professor Sean Sanderson when he starts poking around too much. But Sean isn’t about to stay away. Not when he hears about the murder of a former student, and definitely not if young, exciting Dane has information about it. But the more he allows himself to get dragged into this supernatural world of monsters and ghosts, the more the danger escalates. And if Sean and Dane aren’t careful, tracking down a murderer who can use magic might just get them killed

Review
I’m honestly not sure how I feel about this book. I love the idea of a kind of supernatural enforcer keeping rogue elements in line. But this book just didn’t settle with me. Both Dane and Sean start with an antagonist type relationship and it pretty much stays that way. Dane is very prickly, bitchy and short tempered. I’m not sure if that’s because he doesn’t want to be in bleu falls (he was sent there as a Decrypter) or he is always that way. Sean keeps coming back. If this is a start of a series featuring them that might explain it, they’ll have time to grow. There were also a few loose ends. Sean was initially looking into a student death by what he thought was a werewolf. This is never mentioned again. The investigation diverted on to another who it turns out was poisoned. Another is the all powerful Order Dane works for. We are left wondering if they do come to wipe Sean’s mind because he’s seen to much or not. Is this the start of an investigative/ supernatural peacekeeping partnership? I don’t know but this book hasn’t gripped me enough to want to know.

2.5 of stars out of 5

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recent Release: Imperfect Match by Jordan Castillo Price

Good Reads Link

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39290871-imperfect-match

Blurb

A man whose future is assigned – A heart that yearns to be free.

Lee Kennedy’s destiny is controlled by the Algorithm. It’s the reason he’s still in college, regardless of his good academic performance. He’s switched his major repeatedly and stalled on his Master’s thesis, but there’s only so much longer he can hold out. Because once he graduates, the Algorithm must be triggered.

Everyone in Lee’s family has allowed the Algorithm to match them with a spouse. As has everyone on his block. His neighborhood. In fact, everyone he’s ever known. Pairing with his own chosen match seems inevitable…until, at his sister’s wedding, he meets Roman.

The waiter lives in the Taxable District, a run-down neighborhood that’s only a brief train ride away, but feels like another world. The seedy District is governed by different standards—different expectations—so it’s not exactly a surprise that Roman isn’t married. But it’s definitely a shock to taste his lips.

One forbidden encounter has Lee reeling. He questions everything. His past. His future. And especially the Algorithm. He longs for the freedom to choose not only his own partner, but his own destiny.

When defying the Algorithm will cost everything—family, home, and even livelihood—is Lee strong enough to take another path?

If you enjoy journeys of self-discovery with a futuristic bent, you’ll love this standalone character-driven adventure.

Review

I want to start out by saying I’m a giant Jordan Castillo Price Fan and so when I see that she’s written something I immediately grab it up! I have to say that if this hadn’t been written by her I would have skipped it based on the blurb – because that sort of dystopian stuff just isn’t my cuppa tea in general. Add to it my intense fear and worry about where our country is going right now and I just can’t handle reading dark stuff – even if there’s light at the end of the tunnel.

I think fans of the author will (in general) love this. Fans of darker romances (meaning the world around them is dark, not their emotions etc.) Many people loved this and I encourage folks to read those reviews ☺

No rating.

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Audiobook: Tried and True (THIRDS Book 10) By Charlie Cochet

audiobookreview

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/tried-true-by-charlie-cochet-9070-b

Blurb

When THIRDS agent Dexter J. Daley met Team Leader Sloane Brodie, he couldn’t have imagined how slamming into his new partner—literally—would shake both their worlds. Now four years later, they’ve faced dangers, fought battles both personal and professional… and fallen deeply in love. Now their big moment is finally in sight, and they’re ready to stand up together and make it official. Unfortunately, as the countdown to their big day begins, an enemy declares war on the THIRDS….

With their family in danger, Dex and Sloane are put to the test on how far into darkness they’ll walk to save those they love. As secrets are unearthed, a deadly betrayal is revealed, and Dex and Sloane must call on their Destructive Delta family for one last hurrah to put an end to the secret organization responsible for so much devastation.

Dex and Sloane will have plenty of bullets to dodge on the way to the altar, but with happiness within their grasp, they are determined to get there come hell or high water….

Review
(Book reviewed here previously by Beth)

Charlie Cochet has ended her series on a huge rush! Nonstop action up to the end! The book starts 3 weeks before the wedding and it’s seems that every time Dex and Sloane turn around they are in a life and death situation. If not them, then it’s someone close to them.

We are taken on a roller coaster of emotions throughout the story, with your heart in your throat action scenes. The chemistry between Dex and Sloane is explosive both in and out of the bedroom. Everything is tied up nicely, with the shocking surprise on who is the head bad guy. We even see a brief scene, where Dex is caught purring. The story concludes with the wedding that is well done and tasteful and leaves the reader with tears in their eyes.

I have to say that Charlie Cochet could not have done a better job of telling the ending of this series. Yet left it open enough that if she wanted to continue it she could.

Review by Morgan

I have to agree with Beth. This is a great ending to an amazing series. I’ll admit to both being really sad the ride is over and grateful at the same time, because I just can’t watch our boys go through any more trauma!

This is a fans’ book and only to be read as part of the series, but fans will HAVE to read it.

Audio

Thankfully Mark Westfield has been able to narrate the entire series as much like Daniel Radcliffe became the face of Harry Potter, so does he become the voice of Dex and Sloane.

He adds so much to the experience with sound effects and accents and overall it’s just an amazing trip!

Highly recommended!

5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

Release Day Review: Mage of Inconvenience by Parker Foye

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents
https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/mage-of-inconvenience-by-parker-foye-9390-b

Blurb
Can they find the magic in a practical union?

West is on the run from his werewolf pack, but if he cannot renew his magical defenses, he won’t get far. What he needs is a mage….

Julian is part of a wealthy and ancient family, and one day, his legacy will include his mother’s vast library of spell books—and the knowledge he needs to correct his past mistakes. But his inheritance comes with a stipulation: he has to be married before he can collect. What he needs is a husband….

West and Julian can help each other, and at first they don’t want anything further. But as they dodge meddling cousins, jealous rivals, and an insidious drug, it becomes clear that their lives are entwined in ways they never imagined—and they’re in greater danger than they thought possible

Review
I’m a sucker for this kind of trope where they make a bargain then fall in love. This one is a little different. They are a Mage and a Werewolf for one. There is a lot more than just a will, dare I say motherly interference after she has passed away (I don’t mean as a ghost just spells left behind). Julian puts up a front of ampretentious young man to all those who meet him. Only those close know how insecure he can be. West was on the run from his father that’s why he’s hiding. As the story progressed and I got to know both characters I found myself drawn more towards West than Julian. Julian needs not only to marry but to form a bond, which he doesn’t really believe in. West does believe in bonds but needs Julian’s skills. The majority of the story is dealing with interference and the bond growing between them. Julian’s two cousins and West’s family cause trouble for them in different ways. The problem I have is that it seemed like the bond just appeared. There is no sex in the story so either the bond grows out of affection or it’s a subtle fated mate situation. Also considering that West is hiding from his family, apart from his brother there is no mention of them at the end. Overall not one of my favourite stories but good enough.

3 of stars out of 5

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

 

 

 

 

Friends to Lovers: The Wolf’s Man Friday by Julia Talbot

release day review

Dreamspinner Presents

https://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/books/the-wolfs-man-friday-by-julia-talbot-9466-b

Blurb
The last thing Sebastian Zeller wants is to be pack Alpha. But when the pack leader, his uncle Ron, is attacked, he has no choice but to leave his beloved Colorado mountains and fulfill his duty as Ron’s heir—at least until his uncle recovers. In the meantime, he intends to lure the attacker out… and make them pay.
When Ron gets wind of Sebastian’s plan to catch the attacker, he doesn’t like the idea of risking his heir.That’s where Jaxon Reedis comes in—he’ll balance protecting the dark and sexy werewolf with pretending to be his personal assistant. He’s walking a fine line that requires all his foxy wit and craftiness… and that’s on top of the inescapable feeling that he and Sebastian are meant for each other. When the attacker returns, will they be able to maintain their deepening bond when danger threatens to tear down everything they’re building?

Review
A delightful, snappy, story about a wolf who doesn’t want to be alpha and a bodyguard pretending to be a personal assistant.

The banter between Sebastian and Jaxon is great. I had a hard time at first when they started talking mind to mind. Thought that would unsettle them more, but it just flowed. Also I’m not sure if Sebastian ever put together that Jaxon was more than a personal assistant. Yes the guy had mad skills, but that issue never came up in conversation. Nobody called Jaxon on him moving from personal assistant/bodyguard to mate. Nothing from the alpha that hired him, or Jaxon’s boss.

The things I liked was how well they played off of each other, mentally, physically and emotionally. I loved their playful side. Running around Dallas following whatever whim was suggested. Julia Talbot was masterful in blending both the human side with the animal. The sex scenes were both hot and tender, and the cuddle times included both skin and fur. I loved how she incorporated the need for touch so deeply into the story.

The main supporting characters really pulled the story together. I’m sure Alan will have a story, and I would love to see Tyrone have one too. I mean really an elk working for a pack of wolves!

This is definitely a fun read, and I look forward to more from the author.

4.5 of 5 stars

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Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review