Tag Archives: kindle

Fantasy Lover by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperback (February 18, 2002)
Kindle: 352 pages / 415 KB
Rating: of 5 stars

Dear Reader,

Being trapped in a bedroom with a woman is a grand thing. Being trapped in hundreds of bedrooms over two thousand years isn’t. And being cursed into a book as a love-slave for eternity can ruin even a Spartan warrior’s day.

As a love-slave, I know everything about women. How to touch them, how to savor them, and most of all, how to pleasure them. But when I was summoned to fulfill Grace Alexander’s sexual fantasies, I found the first woman in history who saw me as a man with a tormented past. She alone bothered to take me out of the bedroom and onto the world. She taught me to love again.

But I was not born to love. I was cursed to walk eternity alone. As a general, I had long ago accepted my sentence. Yet now I have found Grace–the one thing my wounded heart cannot survive without. Sure, love can heal all wounds, but can it break a two-thousand-year-old curse?

Julian of Macedon

Review:

An oldie but a goodie? Maybe so. After a recommendation from a customer, I gave this book a chance. Not really knowing what to expect (sometimes I like to just jump into books without looking too far into the premise), I took the plunge into Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter series with this book.

Though a bit scandalized by the content (which, I suppose, should have been expected since the main character did summon a “love-slave” from a book), the story played a lot with Gods, Goddesses and paranormal mysticism. The concepts Kenyon came up with were interesting enough to keep me reading.

One thing that did confuse me was where the “Dark-Hunter” part was supposed to come into play. It was only with a bit of research and the start of the next book that I realized that “Fantasy Lover” was more of a prequel of sorts.

The characterizations of the Gods and Goddesses that showed up felt fitting and appropriate. Or at least, Kenyon made it feel appropriate. I enjoyed how she portrayed them and her other characters.

Definitely a recommendation for those in the mood for a steamy romance, and enjoy that bit of paranormal.

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The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

Publisher: Harlequin Teen (May 1, 2011)
Kindle: 304 pages / 441 KB
Rating: of 5 stars

It’s always been just Kate and her mom—and her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate’s going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won’t live past the fall.

Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld—and if she accepts his bargain, he’ll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.

Kate is sure he’s crazy—until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she’ll become Henry’s future bride, and a goddess.

Review:

It was a fun read that was easy to get caught up in. Carter brilliantly craftered this tale that, rather than being a retelling of Hades and Persephone, was very much it’s own story.

Fast paced, almost too fast at times, I was able to enjoy Katie’s changing feelings in regards to her tests and towards Henry. The mysteries that kept me reading late into the night were one by one revealed in the end.

Though I would have been happy if this was a stand alone novel, to find out it is just the first in a trilogy is great as well. I recommend others even remotely interested in YA romances and Greek myths to read this. You won’t be disappointed. Then we can anxiously anticipate the next books together. (“Goddess Interrupted” coming late January 2012 according to AimeeCarter.com!)


In My Mailbox (01)

My first In My Mailbox post! Hosted by The Story Siren, In My Mailbox is a chance to showcase new books, ones checked out from the library, bought, won or received for review. All summaries taken from either Goodreads or Amazon.

Touching Silver by Jamie Craig

The chase of the Silver Maiden continues in this second of the series . . . A young woman reappears five years after being kidnapped and cold-case detective Olivia Wright reopens the investigation. The dangerous Gabriel de los Rios appears to be involved so Olivia turns to Isaac McGuire, the LAPD detective who knows Gabriel all too well. Gabrial wants to gain the supernatural power of the Silver Maiden coin and kidnapping is not the only crime he is willing to commit in order to possess it. Olivia and Isaac hope to stop Gabriel before he can do more harm, but Olivia’s single-minded professionalism is derailed by the highly distracting Isaac . . .

Love Walked In by Marisa de los Santos

When Martin Grace enters the hip Philadelphia coffee shop Cornelia Brown manages, her life changes forever. Charming and debonair, the spitting image of Cary Grant, Martin sweeps Cornelia off her feet, but, as it turns out, Martin Grace is more the harbinger of change than the change itself.” Meanwhile, on the other side of town, eleven-year-old Clare Hobbes must learn to fend for herself after her increasingly unstable mother has a breakdown and disappears. Taking inspiration from famous orphans (Anne Shirley, Sara Crewe, Mary Lennox, and even Harry Potter) Clare musters the courage to seek out her estranged father. When the two of them show up at Cornelia’s cafe, Cornelia and Clare form a bond as unlikely as it is deep. Together, they face difficult choices and discover that knowing what you love and why is as real as life gets.

Somewhere Inside by Laura & Lisa Ling

In 2009, Laura Ling, a reporter with Current TV, traveled with a film crew to the region of China that bordered on North Korea to report on defections, particularly of women who were later forced into arranged marriages or sex slavery. The crew momentarily crossed into North Korea, and Ling and Euna Lee, her editor and translator, were captured. Given the hostilities between North Korea and China and a recent critical documentary on North Korea by Laura’s sister, journalist Lisa Ling, the women knew they were in for an ordeal. Laura was beaten during the capture, and the women were held in isolation and faced meager meals, cold, and little medical treatment. In the U.S., Lisa and her family prayed and called on powerful contacts, including Al Gore and Bill Richardson, to win the women’s release. During the time of their captivity, North Korea conducted a nuclear test and fired off missiles, increasing tensions with the U.S. and UN. The women were eventually tried for attempting to overthrow the government and sentenced to 12 years in a labor camp, but through behind-the-scenes maneuvering and negotiations with prickly North Korea, they were finally released after five months in captivity. This memoir alternates between the sisters, with Laura recalling the escalating peril of her capture and imprisonment and Lisa recalling heightened worries as weeks dragged into months. A riveting story of captivity and the enduring faith, determination, and love of two sisters.

Two Moon Princess by Carmen Ferreiro-Esteban

In this coming-of-age story set in a medieval kingdom, Andrea is a headstrong princess longing to be a knight who finds her way to modern-day California. But her accidental return to her family’s kingdom and a disastrous romance brings war, along with her discovery of some dark family secrets. Readers will love this mix of traditional fantasy elements with unique twists and will identify with Andrea and her difficult choices between duty and desire.


Stay by Deb Caletti

Publisher: Simon Pulse (April 5, 2011)
Kindle: 352 pages / 670 KB
Source: Galley Grab
Ratings: 5 of 5 stars

Clara’s relationship with Christian is intense from the start, and like nothing she’s ever experienced before. But what starts as devotion quickly becomes obsession, and it’s almost too late before Clara realizes how far gone Christian is–and what he’s willing to do to make her stay.Now Clara has left the city—and Christian—behind. No one back home has any idea where she is, but she still struggles to shake off her fear. She knows Christian won’t let her go that easily, and that no matter how far she runs, it may not be far enough…

Review:

This is my first Deb Caletti book, and I was simply blown away by it. Normally I’d stick with YA science fiction & fantasy, but for books like this one, I’d gladly try other YA contemporary fiction novels.

Masterfully written, Caletti finds a balance in her novel that could easily have come out poorly. Alternating chapters helps the reader to learn of what was happening to Clara now, and her relationship with Christian from the beginning. With books that switch back and forth that way, I traditionally find myself preferring one time frame, and impatiently reading/skimming through the other section. That wasn’t the case with Stay however. Caletti’s writing was flawless and kept me enchanted and engaged, even when the darkness in Christian started to make itself more known.

I realized, as I was writing this review, that I wanted to start off a lot of my points with a “normally I don’t” or a “usually I wouldn’t”. This entire book is outside of my norm, yet isn’t. Caletti has this way with words that I can’t get enough. Her metaphors are dead on, and her language brings this novel to life. The idea isn’t unusual in itself, but it’s the way Caletti takes it and makes it her own that makes Stay as good a read as I found it to be.

Caletti was able to take a dark and serious topic, and wrote it in such a gripping way that it is not only relevant to the YA target audience, but to an older audience as well. Definitely a recommendation for anyone remotely interested.


The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Steig Larsson

Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (June 23, 2009)
Paperback: 664 pages
Series: Millenium #1
Rating: 2 of 5 stars

Mikael Blomkvist, a once-respected financial journalist, watches his professional life rapidly crumble around him. Prospects appear bleak until an unexpected (and unsettling) offer to resurrect his name is extended by an old-school titan of Swedish industry. The catch – and there’s always a catch – is that Blomkvist must first spend a year researching a mysterious disappearance that has remained unsolved for nearly four decades. With few other options, he accepts and enlists the help of investigator Lisbeth Salander, a misunderstood genius with a cache of authority issues. Little is as it seems in Larsson’s novel, but there is at least one constant: you really don’t want to mess with the girl with the dragon tattoo.

Review:

Let me start by saying, I’m probably one of the few people who didn’t immediately fall in love with this book (if at all). I’ll admit though, Larsson had an interesting idea. Partly because of my aunt’s recommendation and to be able to watch the movies guilt-free, I forged through and read the book.

Set in Sweden, it was interesting to read about a foreign place. The story circles aroudn the two main charachters: Mikael Blomkvist, a journalist who recent lost a major libel case, and Lisbeth Salander, a brilliant but largely misunderstood girl who is considered legally incompetent in the eyes of the Swedish law. Then we throw Henry Vanger into the mix, the elderly former CEO of Vanger Enterprises. Vanger is obsessive over the cold case, and now, in his old age, wants to try one last time to put it all to rest.

Definitely an interesting plot, and a great set of well developed, flawed characters to keep us interested. But maybe in part due to my lack of understanding for Swedish society, there were times when it felt like the story dragged. More often then not, I found myself skimming through quite a few information centered sections, and the story didn’t progress as swiftly as I would have liked.

Again, I mostly read this book for the movie. There were several topics that made me quite uncomfortable (because I have the sensibilities of a maiden aunt). There were things like adultery, rape and corruption in the system. One particular scene involved Lisbeth and the scum ball social worker (or whatever they’re called in Sweden), who makes his appearance again in the next book so I wasn’t allowed to forget his existence easily. I’m inclined to believe people love these books for a reason, so I tentatively recommend this book in hopes you all find something redeeming that I missed. It’s a slow start, but for others (just not myself) it does pick up as you get into the book.


Shades of Twilight by Linda Howard

Publisher: Pocket (September 1, 1997/ November 24, 2009)
Kindle: 384 pages / 562 KB
Rating: 3 of 5 stars

Roanna Davenport was raised a wealthy orphan on her grandmother’s magnificent Alabama estate, Davencourt, where she had a passion for horses, a genius for trouble, and a deep love for her cousin, Webb. But everyone expected Webb to marry their ravishing cousin, Jessie. When he did, Roanna’s desire became no more than the stuff of dreams — until the night Jessie was found bludgeoned to death.

After the shocking murder of his wife, Webb left for Arizona, abandoning the legacy that he had once believed was all he wanted. But then an all-grown-up Roanna walked into a dingy bar in Nogales to bring him home; the mischievous sprite he had known ten years earlier was no more. Gone, too, was her fire. In its place was ice that melted at his touch. Webb is drawn back to Davencourt, to Roanna, and to the killer that once destroyed his life and waits only for the chance to finish the job….

Review:

This is a pretty old romance novel. I’d been looking for something new to read now that I’ve exhausted all my Nora Roberts options. (I haven’t read any of her J.D.Robb works, but I’ll get to it sooner or later.)

I hate to sound cliched, but I read romance novels for the plots and not the smut. Since this will be my first romance novel review, I’ll explain myself a little here. They have an adult fairy tale feel for me: you can trust them to have a decent, happy ending. “Shades of Twilight” hit the limits of what I find acceptable amounts of smut. The book even starts with a sex scene! How scandalous! The smut bordered from being simply too steamy to over the top and crude. If they weren’t having sex then the characters were thinking about it.

The storyline was relatively different enough to keep me interested even when the smut made me want to go away. One issue readers may have is how seemingly incestuous the relationships in the book are. Howard pushes the lines on what is and isn’t socially acceptable, but writes it in a way to keep the reader hooked and willing to explore the possibilities.

I haven’t read any of Howard’s other works, but her ability to keep me engaged and emotionally vested in the character’s well-being, despite my discomfort, has me contemplating what else to read by her. If you able to keep an open mind and are looking for a new romance to read, do check this out.


“Waiting on” Wednesday: Chasing Fire

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Breaking the Spine. The purpose is to spotlight upcoming releases that we are excited for.

Chasing Fire by Nora Roberts

Kindle: 880 KB
Hardcover: 480 pages
Publication date: April 12, 2011
Publisher: Putnam Adult

From Amazon:

There’s little as thrilling as firefighting-at least to Rowan Tripp. The Missoula smoke jumpers are in Rowan’s blood: her father is a legend. She’s been fighting fires since her eighteenth birthday. At this point, returning to the wilds of Montana for the season feels like coming home-even with reminders of the partner she lost last season still lingering.

Fortunately, this year’s rookie crop is one of the strongest ever-and Gulliver Curry’s one of the best. He’s also a walking contradiction, a hotshot firefighter with a big vocabulary and a winter job at a kids’ arcade.

Everything is thrown off balance when a dark presence lashes out against Rowan, looking to blame someone for last year’s tragedy. Rowan knows she can’t complicate things with Gull-any distractions in the air or on the ground could mean the end-but if she doesn’t find someone she can lean on, she may not make it through the summer. . .


One for the Money by Janet Evanovich (Fiction)

Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin (February 24, 1999)
Kindle: 352 pages / 379 KB
Series: Stephanie Plum #1
Rating: 3 of 5 stars

After her Miata is repossessed, Stephanie Plum turns to bounty hunting for quick cash, and her first quarry, an ex-cop accused of murder, turns out to be her first lover, with whom she still shares a powerful chemistry.

Review:

For anyone who reads mystery/ thrillers and has browsed in a book store, it more than likely you have seen this book before, even in passing. It’s Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series. Sporting bright, colorful and bordering obnoxious covers, I almost avoided picking up this first book.

The reason I picked up this series was the countless recommendations. One way it was described to me was as being “light, easy reading”. And, it is. I’ve read a few of Janet Evanovich’s re-published romance novels & “Wicked Appetite”, her new book that came out last fall (which is a spin-off of the Stephanie Plum un-numbered set of books). Her romance always had too much packed in to really work well. With the Plum series, by simply being a series it gives Evanovich adequate time to fit in what plot themes she wants and time to develop her characters.

In this first book, we meet the main cast of characters. There’s Stephanie’s family: her mother (who constantly wants Stephanie to settle down and live up to the “Burg” expectations), her Grandma Mazur (who decided to let loose after her husband passed on), and her father (who tries his hardest to ignore them all at the dinner table and focus on his meal). Vinnie is her cousin, whom she blackmails into giving her a job as a Bond Enforcement Agent (BEA) aka bounty hunter. Then there’s Joe Morelli, the bad boy turned cop turned Failure to Appear (FTA), who has a sexual history with Stephanie. Through Stephanie’s new job, she meets Ranger. He’s the hot Cuban American bountry hunter, who, on a lark, takes Stephanie under his wing. He likens it to a Professor Higgins and Eliza Dolittle type of relationship.

It’s an interesting mix of characters with an interesting plot to boot. However as a standalone, the sheer amount of people you meet can be overwhelming. Luckily it’s part of a series, and Evanovich has the space to spread her creative wings. Overall, this series is definitely an easy read. Give it a chance, and you’ll find yourself flying through all the books.


River Marked by Patricia Briggs (fiction)

Publisher: Ace Books (March 1, 2011)
Kindle: 576 KB
Hardcover: 336
Series: Mercy Thompson #6
Rating: 5 of 5 stars

Car mechanic Mercy Thompson has always known there was something different about her, and not just the way she can make a VW engine sit up and beg. Mercy is a shapeshifter, a talent she inherited from her long-gone father. She’s never known any others of her kind. Until now.

An evil is stirring in the depths of the Columbia River-one that her father’s people may know something about. And to have any hope of surviving, Mercy and her mate, the Alpha werewolf Adam, will need their help…

Review:

This is the newest Mercy Thompson book I mention in my last review. I pre-ordered it on Amazon/Kindle and spent Tuesday reading it. Definitely a fantastic continuation of the series.

As the readers of the series know, (mostly) through no fault of her own, Mercy inevitably finds herself embroiled in all sorts of trouble. This time though, Mercy and Adam are away from the pack and their friends on their honeymoon.

With the past books, there was a lot of focus on Mercy and her “crew”, as I’ll call them. That “crew” consisting of Stefan the vampire, Adam, Warren, Kyle, Zee, Adam’s pack, etc. This time Briggs moved us away from that focus. Instead, for majority of the book, we get to see Adam and Mercy on their own interacting with strangers. What I loved about this book was how the mystery of Mercy’s father was finally touched upon and explored.

No longer is it just the typical supernatural creatures being represented. Briggs is moving away from just werewolves, vampires, etc. for this book. Instead we get to delve more into Native American folklore. Which I felt was a brilliant move on Briggs’ part to keep the story interesting and the reader coming back for more.

A must read for any Patricia Briggs/ Mercy Thompson fan. And if you haven’t read any of her work/ this series yet, go read “Moon Called” and fall in love with them as I did.

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Side note: Thanks to Jessica from Confessions of a Bookaholic for letting me use her book review style!


Moon Called by Patricia Briggs (Fiction)

If anyone reading this has read my previous review of “Skinwalker”, you guys may have noticed how enamored I am with the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs. The first book, “Moon Called” will be the review topic for today and hopefully cause one or two people to try one of my favorite series. Plus the new book in the series (“River Marked” yay!) comes out today, so I thought this review would be a nice way to commemorate it.

As the series name indicates, the book is about Mercy Thompson, a mechanic who also happens to be a skinwalker. When a stray werewolf finds his way to Mercy, it triggers a chain of events that lands her in the middle of it all. And she soon finds herself in more trouble than she wanted. You’ll meet the potential love interests of Mercy: Samuel Cornick, Mercy’s old flame, and Adam Hauptman, her hot & hotheaded, controlling neighbor. Coincidentally (or not), both men are werewolves. Plus, throughout it all, you get a taste of the romantic tension to come as the series progresses.

Categorized as an urban fantasy, Briggs is skillfully able to weave in the fantasy and mythology, of monsters & creatures of magic thought to be mere story, into the world as we know it today. The fae have come out, and it is clear that werewolves and other magical beings are likely to follow.

Written from a first person POV, we see Briggs’ world through Mercy. A kickass character, Mercy is a skinwalker who had been raised by werewolves. As anyone aware of any werewolf folklore may know, werewolves are intensely dominant and aggressive creatures. Growing up in that sort of environment has helped develop Mercy in a headstrong character. She’s a good mix of disobedience, stubbornness and caring that makes her a compelling character to learn more about.

This is a book at the top of my recommendation list. This is the first time I seriously started thinking about reading adult sci-fi/fantasy books. Prior I mainly stuck with YA ones, because as a coworker of mine said, YA sci-fi/fantasy books tend to be plot driven and lack a lot of the gratuitous sex and violence often seen in adult sci-fi/fantasy. Check it out.

Side note: We’re always looking for suggestions. If there’s something you want us read and review, leave a comment or email. Thanks.