Monthly Archives: April 2011

Abandon (Abandon, #1) by Meg Cabot

AbandonThough she tries returning to the life she knew before the accident, Pierce can’t help but feel at once a part of this world, and apart from it. Yet she’s never alone . . . because someone is always watching her. Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.

But now she’s moved to a new town. Maybe at her new school, she can start fresh. Maybe she can stop feeling so afraid.

Only she can’t. Because even here, he finds her. That’s how desperately he wants her back. She knows he’s no guardian angel, and his dark world isn’t exactly heaven, yet she can’t stay away . . . especially since he always appears when she least expects it, but exactly when she needs him most.

But if she lets herself fall any further, she may just find herself back in the one place she most fears: the Underworld.

This is Meg Cabot’s latest release and it begins a new series based on the Persephone myth.  Obviously, this is not one of her humorous stories.

Although it is part of a series, the ending was not a real cliffhanger.  There was one storyline that was not addressed that I wish had been explored further.  It’s going to bother me until the next book comes out.

When you finish reading the book, ask me about it.  I want to see if you have figured anything out that I missed.


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Filed under Contemporary, Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult

Mane Squeeze (Pride, #4) by Shelly Laurenston

Growing up on the tough Philly streets, Gwen O’Neill has learned how to fend for herself. But what is she supposed to do with a nice, suburban Jersey boy in the form of a massive Grizzly shifter? Especially one with a rather unhealthy fetish for honey, moose, and . . . uh . . . well, her. Yet despite his menacing ursine growl and four-inch claws, Gwen finds Lachlan “Lock” MacRyrie cute and really sweet. He actually watches out for her, protects her, and unlike the rest of her out-of-control family manages not to morbidly embarrass her. Too bad cats don’t believe in forever.
At nearly seven feet tall, Lock is used to people responding to him in two ways: screaming and running away. Gwen-half lioness, half tigress, all kick-ass-does neither. She’s sexy beyond belief and smart as hell, but she’s a born protector. Watching out for the family and friends closest to her but missing the fact that she’s being stalked by a murderous enemy who doesn’t like hybrids . . . and absolutely hates Gwen. Lock probably shouldn’t get involved, but he will. Why? Because this is Gwen-and no matter what the hissing, roaring, drape destroying feline says about not being ready to settle down, Lock knows he can’t simply walk away. Not when she’s come to mean absolutely everything to him.

How many times am I going to re-read this book?  It doesn’t matter.  I always love it.

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Filed under Contemporary, Erotica, Humor, Paranormal, Romance

Black Magic Woman (The Others, #4) by Christine Warren

Daphanie Carter is thrilled that her sister Danice finally found her Prince Charming—even though he’s not quite, well, human. Daphanie is trying to keep an open mind. Which is why she jumps at the chance to enter the hidden world of The Others when a friendly imp invites her to a non-human nightclub. Daphanie’s curious to see how the Other half lives—and parties—but soon, one handsome stranger has her bewitched, bothered, and beside herself…

Enter Asher Grayson. As a Guardian, it’s his job to protect humans who get mixed up in the affairs of Others. When he spots Daphanie in a club, going head to head with a notorious witch doctor, he steps in to cool things off. Now the heat is on. Daphanie becomes the target of strange magical attacks, and Asher’s got to undo the voodoo before it’s too, too late. But soon he starts to wonder if this beautiful, beguiling mortal has put a spell on him—because every little thing she does is magic…

I thought this was another re-write of of one her ebooks.  I couldn’t figure out why I didn’t remember it.  This was actually a completely new book.  It just took place in the middle of the series.

I think this one is a little darker than most of the series.  I hope that is not a new direction she is going.  I really like the humor in her other books.

Christine Warren included a letter to the reader which lists the reading order of this series.  It even includes books that are not published yet.  She promises this is the order that will remain, so I guess I need to renumber my books.  The original ebook title is in parentheses.

  1. One Bite With a Stranger (Fantasy Fix)
  2. Big Bad Wolf (Fur Factor)
  3. Prince Charming Doesn’t Live Here (Faer Fetched)
  4. Black Magic Woman
  5. Not Your Ordinary Faerie Tale (Fighting Faer) – not published yet
  6. Untitled
  7. Fur for All (I am assuming this will be re-released under a different title in the future.)
  8. Fur Play (ditto)
  9. Wolf at the Door
  10. She’s No Faerie Princess
  11. The Demon You Know
  12. Howl at the Moon
  13. Walk on the Wild Side
  14. You’re so Vein
  15. Born to be Wild

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Filed under Contemporary, Humor, Paranormal, Romance

Big Bad Beast (Pride, #6) by Shelly Laurenston

When it comes to following her instincts, former Marine Dee-Ann Smith never holds back. And this deadly member of a shifter protection group will do anything to prove one of her own kind is having hybrids captured for dogfights. Trouble is, her too-cute rich-boy boss Ric Van Holtz insists on helping out. And his crazy-like-a-fox smarts and charming persistence are making it real hard for Dee to keep her heart safe…Ric can’t believe his luck. He’s wanted this fiercely independent she-wolf from day one, but he never expected teamwork as explosive as this. And now is his last chance to show Dee what she needs isn’t some in-your-face Alpha male – but a wily, resourceful wolf who’ll always have her back in a fight…and between the sheets. 

I have been waiting for this book for months.  Okay, I have been waiting since the last book, Beast Behaving Badly, was released. Which, by the way, I have read and re-read and re-read again.

I knew I probably wouldn’t like this one as well simply because Dee isn’t the most likable character in the series.  However, the author does an excellent job of developing her personality without changing any of her previous traits.

Almost all, if not all, of the previous main characters show up again along with a few who have only been mentioned in previous books.  And yes, Blayne is there to torture Dee Ann.

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Filed under Contemporary, Humor, Paranormal, Romance

A Discovery of Witches (All Souls, #1) by Deborah Harkness

A richly inventive novel about a centuries-old vampire, a spellbound witch, and the mysterious manuscript that draws them together.

Deep in the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure lost for centuries-and she is the only creature who can break its spell.

Debut novelist Deborah Harkness has crafted a mesmerizing and addictive read, equal parts history and magic, romance and suspense. Diana is a bold heroine who meets her equal in vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont, and gradually warms up to him as their alliance deepens into an intimacy that violates age-old taboos. This smart, sophisticated story harks back to the novels of Anne Rice, but it is as contemporary and sensual as the Twilight series-with an extra serving of historical realism.

This book has amazing depth and a story that pulls you in from the very first.  Although there are numerous characters, they are so well developed that I never forgot who each one was.

There is definitely a sequel coming (date unknown), but the ending is solid.  I am a little worried about Matthew though in the next book.  Can’t say why without spoiling it, so you’ll have to read it yourself.

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Filed under Contemporary, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance

Quicksilver (Looking Glass, #2; Arcane Society, #11) by Amanda Quick

Virginia Dean wakes at midnight beside a dead body, with a bloody knife in her hand and no memory of the evening’s events. Dark energy, emanating from the mirrors lining the room, overpowers her senses. With no apparent way in or out, she is rescued by a man she has met only once before, but won’t soon forget….

Owen Sweetwater inherited his family’s talent for hunting the psychical monsters who prey on London’s women and children, and his investigation into the deaths of two glass-readers has led him here. The high-society types of the exclusive Arcane Society would consider her an illusionist, a charlatan, even a criminal, but Owen knows better. Virginia’s powers are real – and they just might be the key to solving this challenging case. (from Goodreads)

Let me just say, romance, paranormal, Regency (or close enough) . . . what’s not to like.  Add to that, this book is written by Amanda Quick (AKA Jayne Ann Krentz and the book has to be a winner.  It is.

Owen is one of my favorite heroes in a long time.  He does not have a hidden agenda, except he knows from the beginning that Virginia is the woman for him.  He just doesn’t understand how she doesn’t know it too.

One of these days I am going to read the Arcane books straight through.  Of course, I also need to include the Eclipse books because they are woven into the storyline as well.

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Filed under Historical, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance

After the Golden Age by Carrie Vaughn

LibraryCan an accountant defeat a supervillain? Celia West, only daughter of the heroic leaders of the superpowered Olympiad, has spent the past few years estranged from her parents and their high-powered lifestyle. She’s had enough of masks and heroics, and wants only to live her own quiet life out from under the shadow of West Plaza and her rich and famous parents.

Then she is called into her boss’ office and told that as the city’s top forensic accountant, Celia is the best chance the prosecution has to catch notorious supervillain the Destructor for tax fraud. In the course of the trial, Celia’s troubled past comes to light and family secrets are revealed as the rift between Celia and her parents grows deeper. Cut off from friends and family, Celia must come to terms with the fact that she might just be Commerce City’s only hope.

This all-new and moving story of love, family, and sacrifice is an homage to Golden Age comics that no fan will want to miss. (from Goodreads)

For some reason, I had it in my mind that this book was written for Young Adults.  Although it is perfectly appropriate for teenagers, the main character is in her mid-twenties, so it is not about teenagers.

I can’t really say I learned to read from comic books, but I know I had hundreds if not thousands of them as a kid.  I still read graphic novels occasionally and will defend anyone’s choice of reading format at the drop of a hat.

I thought the characters in this book had more in common with the Marvel Universe than DC.  There was a lot of angst between the family members as well as those who were not part of the Olympiad.

I really enjoyed the book and would give it my highest approval except for one scene.  One scene!!  Towards the end of the book, something happens that I thought was totally unnecessary.  Yes, it illustrated an important relationship between a couple of the characters, but it was NOT necessary!

I hate that I let one thing so color my opinion of a book, but that is just the way I am.

I do recommend it.  Read it.  You will enjoy it and maybe the scene won’t tick you off like it did me.

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Filed under Contemporary, Romance, Science Fiction

Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Darkside (Jessica, #1) by Beth Fantasky


The undead can really screw up your senior year …

Marrying a vampire definitely doesn’t fit into Jessica Packwood’s senior year “get-a-life” plan. But then a bizarre (and incredibly hot) new exchange student named Lucius Vladescu shows up, claiming that Jessica is a Romanian vampire princess by birth—and he’s her long-lost fiancé. Armed with newfound confidence and a copy of Growing Up Undead: A Teen Vampire’s Guide to Dating, Health, and Emotions, Jessica makes a dramatic transition from average American teenager to glam European vampire princess. But when a devious cheerleader sets her sights on Lucius, Jess finds herself fighting to win back her wayward prince, stop a global vampire war—and save Lucius’s soul from eternal destruction.

I originally thought this book was written for adults.  It was only recently that I found out it was for Young Adults.  The clue should have been that Jessica is in her senior year of high school.  -sigh-

Anyway, I really enjoyed this book.  It pulled in different aspects of the vampire legend and totally ignored others.  There were a couple of scenes that I found disturbing, but they were important to the storyline.

There were two major “bad guys.”  One of them was human and the other a vampire and I cannot tell you who was the worse.  This was not one of those books where one group is completely evil and the other completely good.  Like real life, there is some of each in everyone.

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Filed under Contemporary, Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult

Human.4 by Mike A. Lancaster


Kyle Straker volunteered to be hypnotized at the annual community talent show, expecting the same old lame amateur acts. But when he wakes up, his world will never be the same. Televisions and computers no longer work, but a strange language streams across their screens. Everyone’s behaving oddly. It’s as if Kyle doesn’t exist.

Is this nightmare a result of the hypnosis? Will Kyle wake up with a snap of fingers to roars of laughter? Or is this something much more sinister?

Narrated on a set of found cassette tapes at an unspecified point in the future, Human.4 is an absolutely chilling look at technology gone too far.

I thought this book was going to be a fun read.  It definitely was not.  What it was was fascinating, engrossing, creepy, and very disturbing.

By the end of the book, my skin was crawling.

I highly recommend this book to everyone!

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Filed under Contemporary, Dystopian, Young Adult

Sweet Possession (Sweet, #5) by Maya Banks


There is nothing Connor Malone wants to do less than babysit the outrageous and out-of-control pop star Lyric Jones. But part of him relishes taming the celebratty songstress and showing her what it’s like to be possessed-body and soul-by one man. And though Lyric’s crazy antics nearly drive Connor to the edge, his quiet intensity penetrates her defenses, leaving them both vulnerable to the secrets that could topple Lyric from the stage. (from Goodreads)

I didn’t particularly like Lyric although she did improve as the book went on.  I did love Connor though.  I would like to sit down and read this series from start to finish.

I think there is probably going to be a spin off series starring Kane.

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Filed under Contemporary, Erotica, Realistic, Romance