Book Review – Black Hearts (Sins Duet #1)- Karina Halle

I absolutely enjoyed the Sins and Needles series which is why I jumped at the opportunity to review this new (but related) duet by Karina Halle.

The story is told ‘some years’ after the events of Sins and Needles. The characters are actually the children of the Sins and Needles characters. We have Violet, Ellie and Camden’s daughter, and Vicente, Javier’s son. So Violet has always found her parents a bit strange. She’s always thought there’s something about them not completely right. When she finds an anonymous letter detailing the death of a grandfather she always thought was dead, her suspicions are confirmed.

Around the same time, in Mexico, Vicente is dying to get out from under his father’s thumb. Yes, he knows he’ll have to lead the Cartel one day, but all he wants to do now is to go far away and live life a little. When he discovers love letters from his dad to an American woman, he’s convinced he has to find her. However, in San Franscisco, he first meets Violet. While she could be a means to an end, she ends up being so much more.

Getting closer to Violet was never part of the plan. But now that I’m staring at her, I’m wondering what her skin feels like, if I could be able to hold her wandering attention and calm her agitated heart.

I was originally so excited to get my hands on this book but my excitement quickly waned. To be completely honest I haven’t taken so long to read a book as I did with this one. It was quite obvious where the storyline was headed towards and there was little to keep my excitement going. The story felt very flat. I would read a chapter, sleep, go about my day, read another chapter and so on and so fourth. It was the kind of story I knew I would forget as soon as I was done. I read an apt description of this kind of book before, that it’s like cotton candy – as soon as you’re done it melts away from your tongue’s memory. Couldn’t have said it better.

When we finally got to the steamy scenes, I got more excited. They were, let’s say light BDSM, but they were good. I read so many sex scenes in a week so at this point if a scene actually catches my attention then I know it’s well done. But that was the only saving grace to the book. It felt hurried. As if the author had this story she wanted to tell but she had many others and only spared some little time for this one. It’s not that it was not good, it’s just that it could have been much much better. It ended up being more on the forgettable side for me.

2.5 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> Black Hearts by Karina Halle

I’d like to thank the author for providing this copy for my review.

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Book Review – All In (Full Tilt #2) – Emma Scott

I wasn’t sure I wanted to read this book. Book #1 was such a masterpiece I felt that anything more would ruin the story for me. Once a book ends, I don’t spend time thinking ‘ah and they’ll get children and grandchildren…’ no. Which is why I hardly ever read extended epilogues or stories written ‘years after’ the original book ended. Particularly with books that end the way Full Tilt did. Of course in real life a 20 something year old girl will find love again after such loss. But I wasn’t sure I wanted to see it happen. The first two or three chapters I was still battling with myself on whether to put the book down. But then it picked up and the author, yet again, managed to wow me.

All In is not a standalone story. I suppose it could be read as such but you’d miss the brilliance of the back story. So I’ll continue on with the review on the assumption that those reading it have already read Full Tilt, and just like me, were unsure whether to go All In 🙂 So Jonah made everyone promise him something. We know what he asked of Kacey, but we could only guess what he said to Theo. Theo’s attitude to Kacey was hot and cold (mostly cold) in book #1. But if you’re like me, you caught the nuances of his attitude, the way Jonah looked when Kacey thought Theo hated her…

Anyway, we start with the promises. With the pain being too much for Kacey so she moves to New Orleans. To Theo becoming her best friend. To maybe more.

I didn’t expect to love this book. And initially I debated on whether I should continue reading. I just couldn’t imagine buying into the storyline. I missed Jonah and I found Theo too… different. Just not the sweetness and beauty that was Jonah. And so this is a testament to the writing prowess of the author because she sold it to me. She did not turn Theo into Jonah, she did not diminish what Kacey and Jonah had, she did not try to make one bigger than the other. I ended up loving the difference that was Theo. How loyal and strong he was.

Plus, I felt both Theo and Kacey’s grief, I felt their confusion about what was happening and when it finally happened, I felt I had also purged my grief over Jonah and so I could be happy that these two just were.

And don’t get me started on the steamy moments! The dancing in New Orleans, wowza! It should have come with a warning sign so I would know not to read it in public! I mean the steamy scenes were just so well done. It was Theo through and through, and it was perfect.

While the book wasn’t as earth shattering as its predecessor, it did more than hold it’s on. It stood on it’s own, a different story but just as beautiful. And while Full Tilt taught me to revel in the moments, All In reminded me where truth lies. I’m the kind of person who overthinks everything, so these words were the perfect antidote.

“The feeling you have in that moment right as you wake up, before your brain mucks it all up with thoughts and words? That very first feeling is where truth lives.”

What an amazing discovery Emma Scott is to me. I can’t wait to read more of her books!

5 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> All In by Emma Scott

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I’d like to thank the author for providing this copy for my review.

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Book Review – Full Tilt – Emma Scott

I don’t read books that make me cry. At least, I don’t consciously seek them out. My favorite books however, those that have stayed with me, are those that made me ugly cry. Full Tilt has officially joined that list of stay-with-me books.

So this is the story of Kacey and Jonah. Two people who would ordinarily never have met let alone fallen in love. Kacey is the lead guitarist in a rock band, one that’s about to hit the big time. But she feels lost. She’s been lost for a while now but she’s always drowned it in alcohol. But now it’s all become too much.

I tried to imagine this girl playing electric guitar on stage in front of a screaming audience. She seemed ready to crack in two, and aside from her friend with the two-tone hair, it seemed like she had not one fucking person in the world to help hold her together.

And then she meets Jonah. Jonah is a limo driver by night and an artist by day. He’s hired to drive the band which is how he ends up with a drunk-out-of-her-mind Kacey. He plans to just drop her off but ends up having to take care of her. And their friendship begins.

I didn’t know it then – I couldn’t have – but in that moment, the rest of my life, or what was left of it, began.

They’re both attracted to each other, but Jonah won’t act on it. See, he’s sick with only months to live. But they can’t deny their attraction for too long, even though they know the end is fast approaching. Jonah prefers to structure his life. Follow the routine he’s created. That way he doesn’t have to feel too much. But Kacey comes to his life and disrupts it in the most beautiful way. And he can’t resist it. It’s just meant to be.

Yes to how fucking good she felt around me. Yes to how sweet her mouth tasted. Yes to the push and pull of our bodies towards the edge. And God, yes to her, this woman who’d burst into my life like a wrecking ball, smashing through my routine, bringing me back to life when I had already resigned myself to death. yes to her chaos, her raw emotion, her desperate need to be touched and held and loved. And yes, more than anything, fuck yes that it was me she wanted, that she unleashed herself in all her messy imperfection on me. Yes. To all of it. To us. To her. Yes.

God this was a beautiful story. The love that was undeniable and real.

I’d always dreamed my true love would swoop into my life, sweep me off my feet in one heroic gesture. I’d know him at once – a flame would burn between us immediately. No doubts or games. Love – and lust – at first sight. He’d rescue me from all the hurt and loneliness, and I’d never doubt I was loved.

To be honest with you, I’m a wuss. I read fiction to get away from reality. And this one was too real, too sad. I read the prologue twice before I could gather up the courage to move to chapter one. But I’m so so so glad I did. I mean, it meant wailing (once in public, because honestly, my heart can’t take this much heartache), but wow. What a book . Such a beautiful story told even more beautifully. I mean this author couldn’t have told this better…

“Her words sunk into my heart. Not the failing organ in my chest, but the part of me that beat for her, lived for her. I felt saturated with warmth and a happiness I didn’t think was possible to experience. Not at a time like this. Not at a place like this.

And in the end, I laughed, I cried and I learned. To live in the little moments because “we have so many. Thousands upon thousands.”

Sigh.

5 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> Full Tilt by Emma Scott

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I’d like to thank the author for providing this copy for my review.

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Book Review – The Knight (Endgame #2) – Skye Warren

“You’re the object of my depravity, the target of every dark wish… I won’t be satisfied until I’ve marked every inch of you, inside and out.”

“Then why did you let me go?”

“Ah, little virgin,” he says gently.”So that I could chase you.”

I felt very lucky that I could jump right into book #2 after finishing book #1. Luckier still because Skye Warren is one of my favorite authors so I knew I was going to get something good.

The Knight is the continuation of Avery’s story. She auctioned her virginity, finally slept with Gabriel Miller but once he was done with her, he sent her away. Now Avery is living in a motel with a prostitute for a neighbor. And as she waits to receive the one million dollars from Gabriel, far more interesting things are happening. For one, she’s starting to dig into her parents’ past. Gabriel is in her head making her doubt her father, so she needs to find out once and for all what happened to her mother. There’s also the fact that she still might lose her house. Oh and that she can finally admit her attraction to Gabriel.

That’s the thing about a knight whose armor shines.. It’s never been in battle. Never been tested. Tarnished black armor like Gabriel’s – that’s where strength lies.

This was a good book. I honestly don’t expect anything less from Skye Warren. But she has written great books and I was hoping this one would be one of them. It wasn’t. There was the time crunch for added thrill, there was the missing diary for added suspense and there was sex – all the things I love in a book. But here’s the thing, my favorite kind of suspense and thrill is when neither I, nor the protagonist, know what’s about to happen. Not because the protagonist refuses to learn the truth or delays the truth, but because there is just no way anyone could expect what happens next. I’m not a fan of the kind of suspense created just because the protagonist keeps postponing it. This was exactly what happened here. I hated that she just allowed Gabriel to dictate things – he takes the diary and she hardly fights for it. Basically she gave him everything without much fight and that irked me.

I know it’s wrong to want a man who ruined my family, wrong to desire a man who purchased my body. He humiliates me just to prove a point. How can that be sexy? Except he does so with such skill that I can’t help but respond, such power that my body falls under his thrall in some evolutionary equation.

Sigh. I mean, I could see why she was so intrigued but I wished she had more of a backbone. And plus, so many things didn’t make sense to me. It sometimes felt orchestrated just to create suspense. That said, there were definite highs. The best being the steamy scenes. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, for illicit/dark steam, you have to go to Skye Warren. She does the best scenes.

All in all, good, not great. And if there’s a book about Harper and Christopher, I’ll be the first one in line for it 🙂

3 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> The Knight by Skye Warren

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I’d like to thank the author for providing this copy for my review.

 

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Book Review – The Pawn (Endgame #1) – Skye Warren

My aim is to read every Skye Warren book ever written. I’m such a huge fan! Her Stripped series, her Beauty series, the standalone book Wanderlust – all so brilliant and the reason she remains the queen of dark erotica. So when I came across her new series Endgame, I had to get my hands on it, particularly because book #2 is just a day away!

So The Pawn is Avery’s story. Avery is beautiful, rich and has a handsome fiance – privileged in every way. Until her dad is disgraced and beaten up. She loses the money, the friends and ends up having to take care of her father. When she learns that she might lose her house as well, she decides to take matters into her own hands. She goes to Gabriel Miller, the man responsible for her father’s downfall and one of the richest men in Tanglewood. She asks for a loan, but Gabriel has far more interesting things in mind. See, Avery is a virgin, and that’s the only thing she has left to give.

In true Skye Warren fashion, the writing is pure brilliance. The mythology mixed in with the push and pull of revenge, lust and romance – absolutely loved it! While this is not the darkest of reads, it definitely has the dark side to it: a virginity auction, a dangerous anti-hero and a definite taste of the forbidden.

And the sex, wowza. I am yet to read a Skye Warren book where I didn’t require a fan 😉 I mean, I read a lot of Erotica. I’ve read very many hot scenes and very many “meh’ scenes. I’ve read authors who’ve outdone themselves in one steamy scene but become very ‘meh’ in others. Not Skye Warren. Each scene is steamier than the last.

And I actually loved that there was a cliffhanger. I was just not ready for this story to end! There’s just so much more left to learn about Gabriel. He has this dark side that’s obvious, but this tender side that comes out when you least expect it. And the biggest question is, what’s his motive? He’s told Avery in every turn that he’s not the charming prince coming to rescue her, yet, isn’t that what he’s doing?

I can’t wait to read The Knight!!!

4 stars!

Amazon Buy Link -> The Pawn by Skye Warren

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Book Review – Wolfsong – TJ Klune

With so many 5 star reviews I just had to give this one a go. And in many ways I agreed, it had all the things I love; angst, romance, shifters and writing that is as close to poetry as you will ever get.

Wolfsong is the story of Oxnard Matheson, or Ox as they call him. Ox’s father abandons him with a promise that Ox will only get shitty stuff handed to him. That he isn’t worth anything. And Ox takes this to heart. One day Ox is coming home from his shift at the garage and encounters a tornado. A tornado named Joe Bennett. A little boy who just can’t stop talking.

“Mom! Mom. You have to smell him! It’s like…like… I don’t even know what it’s like! I was walking in the woods to scope out our territory so I could be like Dad and then it was like…whoa. And then he was all standing there and he didn’t see me… but then I smelled it again and it was him and it was all kaboom! I don’t even know! I don’t even know! You gotta smell him and tell me why it’s all candy canes and pinecones and epic and awesome.”

Ahh. That is probably my favorite part of the book. When Joe and Ox meet. When they’re both too young to understand that the stars have aligned and they’ve met their mate.

And so Ox and Joe become friends. And it’s a beautiful thing. He later learns about werewolves and shifters and that he holds a special place in the Bennett pack. So maybe his father was wrong. Maybe he won’t get shit for the rest of his life. Because here finally is a family that welcomes him and loves him. But of course tragedy is just around the corner. And it separates everything Ox has come to hold dear.

I will say that the first part of the book was my favorite – before the tragedy of course. I loved how Joe saw Ox. I loved how things turned around for Ox. I loved the slow slow burn that was them finally coming together as mates.

It was not a gradual thing. Wait. That was a lie. I didn’t know it was a gradual thing. But it must have been. It had to have been. Because it’s the only thing that explained the cosmic explosion that was the feeling of want and need and mine mine mine. The force of it was ridiculous. It had to have been there. For a long time.

I loved how sure Joe was. Just how beautifully it’s described. And maybe this is why I love paranormal romance so much. The idea of just one mate. The idea that you just know because there’s something between you two that burns stronger than anything else.

So he pressed his forehead against mine and breathed me in and there was that sun, okay? That sun between us, that bond that burned and burned and burned because he’d given it to me. Because he’d chosen me. And I got to choose him back.

And then tragedy struck and it was painful. But this whole part, the tragedy and the separation, this is when I realized that the writing could get taxing. It’s unique and it’s beautiful. But there’s an entire middle section of this book that was the same thing over and over – lots of repetition and events that could either have been shortened or even done away with.

But then the third part. Sigh, when Joe comes back and his bond with Ox is reaffirmed. I fell in love with the book again. I fell in love with the writing again. It was just such a deep story. Such angst, such love. And not just love, but love with such surety it made my heart hurt.

He said, “You’re mine, Ox.”

He said, “I’m yours.”

He said, “And I can’t wait to show you how I’m made for you just as much as you were made for me.”

Gah. I loved these two. There are things I’d change for sure. Particularly things I felt dragged on for too long. But all that said, it was an amazing book.

4 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> Wolfsong by TJ Klune

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Book Review – Debt – Nina G Jones

Once I fall in love with an author’s work, it’s really hard for me to read anything else. I find myself buying book after book until I read everything they’ve written. Or, unless I hit that one book that I can’t finish, then it’s time for me to find another author to obsess over. My current obsession is Nina G. Jones. After reading Take Me With You, I had to get another one of her books, and Debt it was.

Debt is the story of a Tax and Mia. Tax and Mia went to High School together. They ran in different crowds – Mia was popular, Tax was the outsider. Years later, Tax is back, exacting revenge on everyone who wronged him – and that includes Mia.

I will suck her fry, I will fuck the life out of her, I will ravage her until she is hollow and used, and then when she thinks things can’t get any lower, I will destroy the company she loves and kill her.

However, he’s starting to wonder if she deserves his vengeance. Maybe he was wrong and Mia was good all along.

Meanwhile, Mia is falling in love with the dark brooding stranger. He says he’s here to collect a debt and she has to pay. Yet Mia knows she hasn’t done anything to deserve such vengeance. He scares her, but he brings out something else in her.

My dad used to warn me that the devil doesn’t have horns and a pitchfork, he’ll appear as the most beautiful thing you’ve seen. He’ll make you laugh. He’ll make you feel good. You’ll do things you never thought you would, but he’ll tell you it’s okay. And before you know it, you’ve sold your soul to him. That’s how I know Tax is my devil.

The deal is to sleep with him, which isn’t too hard since she loves it. It’s everything she’s ever wanted but never found.

Reckless. Irresponsible. Dirty. Dangerous. Exhilarating. Erotic. Wild. Euphoric. How can one thing be all of those? How can peering into the gutter of my soul feel like I just touched heaven?

But she’s starting to want more from him. More than the dominance and the humiliation, she wonders if he’s capable of giving more.

If he could just give me more, if he could keep the intense and angry side, but show me something else, I could deal. I might even be happy. But his hardness only works if there is some other softness. It’s one thing to bend me over and fuck me like a gutter slut, it’s another thing to really see me as one.

So this is a dark read. Not as dark as Take Me With You, but Tax is definitely the anti hero. He has a plan to destroy everyone who crossed him and that means he’s ready to do anything and everything. Mia is the last in that line of vengeance. And he’s ready to destroy her in every way possible. But he’s not ready for Mia. He wasn’t planning to sleep with her but it happened and they both loved it. Mia loves his dominance and the way he takes and takes before he gives. And not only is it just about the sex, he’s starting to realize he can have more.

For fourteen years I have only lurked in the pitch black corners of my psyche. Mia pulls me out even it it’s just to peer out of the dark and remember what it was like to bask in the glow of something good. And Mia gets to peer into her own dark corners with me.

But will Mia have him when she discovers everything he’s done?

While it was a bit too wordy in places, it definitely hit the right note with me. The author doesn’t shy away from making it dark. Lines are crossed. But, Tax is redeemable. You definitely feel for him from the onset. But he’s also super hot. The sex scenes – wowza! I mean, initially they didn’t really rock my boat. I’m into a lot, but not humiliation. But eventually, when the heart got involved, it became incredibly hot. I absolutely loved the way the author describes orgasms 🙂

And the end… ah!

4 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> Debt by Nina G Jones

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Book Review – All The Ugly And Wonderful Things – Bryn Greenwood

I’ve already found my favorite book of the year. Yes, it was published in 2016, yes,it’s only the 10th of January, but I just can’t see anything beating this book. It’s amazingly written, and it’s taboo, the greatest recipe in my opinion 🙂 For me, it was the experience of a different world, very far removed from my own, yet I weeped with and for the characters. I became so involved that even when I slightly cringed at the taboo, I understood, I empathized. And those two are at the heart of this novel.

So this is the story of Wavy. Wavy’s mom is a drug addict and married to a meth dealer. When they both land in jail, Wavy is moved to her Aunt Brenda’s house. They immediately notice that Wavy is different. She doesn’t speak and she hardly eats. When her behaviour starts rubbing off on her cousin Amy, Aunt Brenda decides to send Wavy back. Wavy is used to being on her own though, despite her age. Her mother is neglectful, her father acts like she doesn’t exist and it’s clear Aunt Brenda can’t keep her. One night, Wavy witnesses a motorcycle crash. The guy, Kellen, is hurt but survives, and this is the start of an unlikely friendship. For starters, Wavy is 8, and Kellen is in his 20’s. But they both find that they can’t help but fall in love.

“I love you, too. I love you.” I said it twice to be sure she heard it. I shivered, not cold anymore but knowing that saying it out loud made it real. For a long time it was this sneaking feeling I didn’t want to look at too closely, but now I’d said it.

I wasn’t sure if I should mention what the taboo topic is here. Particularly because I myself went in blind. But it would be hard to write a review without mentioning the age gap. It’s at the centre of the story – it IS the story.

Right up until that moment it was sweet and funny. Odd couple that they were, they had a real connection. Then he tugged her boot off and kissed the bottom of her bare foot. I could see him doing that kind of thing to his own kid, but she wasn’t. She was someone else’s little girl.

But what amazes me is how the author spins this tale. It’s clearly a love story. Kellen is no pervert.

Did it make me a pervert that I still thought she was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen? Did it make me less of a pervert that twenty and thirteen looked the same on her? When I had her in my arms, none of that mattered.

The more you learn about him the more you realize that these two are meant to be.

Truth was she took care of him as much as he did her. There was a few times when he was younger that I thought to myself, One of these days, he ain’t gonna show up for work, cause he’ll be at home with a gun in his mouth. Jesse Joe was a man with a deep streak of lonely, until Wavy came along.

The story is told in multiple POVs. We get almost all the characters telling the story and that’s what intrigued me the most. To see this love story enfolding in the eyes of other characters. To see how they viewed it and what they felt about it. It was just so wonderfully written. It almost felt too real… like a memoir. The characters were so rich, the storytelling magical, despite it being so tragic.

The crying kept getting louder and louder, until it was hard to listen to. You can look up the word ‘Keening’ in the dictionary, but you don’t know what it means until you hear somebody having her heart ripped out. It went on and on. I was terrified. I didn’t think you could cry like that without hurting yourself. The last ten miles, I cried too. I went all-in for histrionic romance crap, but I’d never loved any guy the way she loved him.

What a story. It takes you through their complete journey. Their ups and downs. And it devastated me. It gave me hope. It reminded me that the world is not black and white. I urge everyone who reads this review to give this book a try – it’s a weighty topic, but oh so worthwhile.

5 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> All The Ugly And Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood

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My Favorite Books of 2016

2016 has been a fabulous book year for me. This year, due to too many competing interests, I wasn’t able to keep up with the blog as much as I did the previous years. I decided that to keep enjoying reading and blogging, I’d have to be more selective with my reading. I now have go-to authors and occasionally, I knew author will come out of nowhere and wow me.

Anyway, without further ado… the best books I read this year, in no particular order:

RK Lilley makes my list every year she publishes – one of my absolute favorite authors.

breakingBreaking Him – I honestly cannot imagine any way this book could be more perfect! It was everything I wanted and needed it to be…and then some. It’s not just the storyline (which is unique and amazing), it’s how its written. It’s the emotions I felt reading it, everything umped to the n-th degree. I was one huge ball of emotion from start to end. I read it fast because I couldn’t put it down. Then I read it slow because I couldn’t bear the thought of it being over.

My review.      Buy Link.

breaking herBreaking Her – And maybe the reason I got so invested in these characters’ happiness was because of how deeply they suffered. How they clawed their way to each other despite the odds.But more than that, it’s the author’s voice, that is so uniquely hers, that makes this book one of the best I’ve read in a long time.

My review.      Buy Link.

I discovered Mercy Brown in 2016 and I’m in love! I want to read everything she writes. So witty, so sexy but also, so so real.

loud Loud is How I Love You – It was incredible how I felt part of the whole Jersey music scene. And that takes talent. I mean, it’s one thing to identify with the characters but it’s quite another to feel like you’ve climbed inside a book and you now live with these people. Like I said, a very refreshing author voice.

My review.      Buy Link.

stayStay Until We Break – Everyone needs to read book! EVERYONE. It needs to top that NYT list because it is so very deserving. So yes, another one for my ‘favorite of all time’ list, and another author crush solidified.

My review.      Buy Link.

 

scoreElle Kennedy is the queen of New Adult. It’s not my favorite genre but she draws me in every single time.

The Score – What a perfect perfect book! The best one in the series yet! And definitely brings back faith in the New Adult genre.

My review.      Buy Link.

 

2016 was also the year I re-discovered my love for thrillers like Jessica Knoll‘s Luckiest Girl Alive:

luckiestBy the end of the book my heart went THUD. I’m not sure I can explain why. I was blindsided by some things, sure. But most of them were not new things. Yet… the storytelling. That’s it. It’s how the events and the reveals happened. It’s how well it’s done that got me. In the end I thought, wow, brilliant.I’ll be thinking about this one for a long time to come.

dawnMy review.      Buy Link.

And Jewel E. Ann‘s Dawn of Forever:

(NB: This is the third book in a series.)
What a stunning conclusion to this dangerously different trilogy! Jewel E. Ann definitely struck gold with this story. It is so outside the norm, I wasn’t even sure how to classify it but it hit all the right notes.

My review.      Buy Link.

And continued my obsession with paranormal romance/urban fantasy. From Joey W. Hill whose series I could not put down! I read about 7 books in a row.

vampire A Vampire’s Claim and Beloved Vampire were my standouts of the year.

After book #1 I knew I’d finally found one of those series that you can’t let go of till you finish the last book. I’ve had that once or twice before and definitely remember Joey W. Hill’s Nature of Desire series giving me the exact same feeling.

My review.      Buy Link.

belovedThe writing is poetic, just draws you in. Some words too sweet yet they still feel right. The characters are unlike those you’ve met before… it’s not just because the women are dommes, it’s how well we see their sensitive side yet know they’re the strongest heroines. It’s how sexy and strong and gentle the heroes are. It’s the storyline – different, engaging, so erotic… it’s basically the first to the last page  of just pure magic.

My review.      Buy Link.

serpentTo Thea Harrison‘s Elder Races series.

Serpent’s Kiss – The thing about this series is that it’s clever. While I love that there’s a lot of romance and steam, I also love the world building, the politics, the detail. I was worried that like with some PnR books, I’d eventually get bored but nope. The world building just keeps getting better and better.

My review.      Buy Link.

mist and furyAnd my biggest discovery of the year: Sarah J. Maas!

A Court of Mist and Fury – Wow, hands down favorite book of 2016! Everything about it is pure brilliance – the story, the story telling, the characters, the surprises… just… stunning. And the best thing about it? 600+ pages of it! 5 stars! Infinity stars! And a love affair between me and Sarah J. Maas is born.

My review.      Buy Link.

And now to my other favorite genre: Dark Erotica!!! Two authors stood out for me: Nina G. Jones

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Take Me With You – What a book! Some characters deeply flawed, others totally messed up. But here’s the thing, you will be hooked from the beginning. Once you enter their dark depraved world, you become involved in their destiny. You root for the monster, you empathize even as his depravity sickens you. It’s everything dark erotica should be.

My review.      Buy Link.

and Callie Hart.

bloodBlood and Roses Series – The writing. It flowed. It was beautiful and it was witty. The thing with serials is that most of the time you read them one by one with some weeks going in between the next release. The biggest problem for me as a reader and as a reviewer is having to remember where I left off. This was the first time I read a full collection of serials all at once. My biggest worry then became that I would notice the disconnect. That the author would veer off the plot between one serial and the next, or forget a crucial detail and leave it unresolved, but not this author. It read as a complete novel. And that, I commend Callie Hart for. That she also tied in those lose ends, that she excited me from begin to end. It’s no mean feat.

My review.      Buy Link.

And to my ultimate guilty pleasure: MM Romance 🙂 This year I discovered and immediately fell in love with Adrienne Wilder.

in theIn the Absence of Light – Best MM book I’ve ever read. But even more than that, definitely top two of my favorite books ever. Ever. I’m not even sure where to begin describing how this book made me feel. I read it in two weeks while I normally read a book in 3 days max. Thing is, I put it down because it made me feel so many emotions all at ones – things I haven’t felt before. It made me re-evaluate myself in a way I haven’t done before. And while I put it down, it never left my mind. I had discussions with my husband about this book. With my friends. With myself. Thought provoking and perfect.

My review.      Buy Link.

And finally, my two go to authors. Megan Hart who has penned two of my favorite books of all time – she just knows how to write Erotica.

begBeg For It – Man, the sex scenes in this one! I mean, its Megan Hart, so the writing was beautiful and the characters are everything, but I have to start with the sex scenes because wow! I’ve always loved a good BDSM story and it has never mattered to me who tops and who bottoms. But books where the man is the submissive are so few. Or maybe I should say GOOD books where the man is a submissive are few. I’ve read less than 5 and I’ve loved much much less than that. It has to be well done for me to love it. I love Alpha males so for me to be turned on by a male sub takes some time. This one was perfect. The first scene and I was lost – hot hot hot.

My review.      Buy Link.

And my other go to author: Anne Calhoun.

the museThe Muse – Just like any other Anne Calhoun book I’ve read, this one had me from the first page. I not only love her stories, I love the way she tells them. The way they draw you in slowly… the way you understand why they fall for each other. And the writing. God the writing was so beautiful!

My review.      Buy Link.

Posted in Contemporary Romance, Dark Erotica, Dark Romance, Erotic Romance, Erotica, MM, New Adult, Paranormal Romance, Romantic Suspense, Thriller | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Book Review – Take Me With You – Nina G. Jones

What a book! Some characters deeply flawed, others totally messed up. But here’s the thing, you will be hooked from the beginning. Once you enter their dark depraved world, you become involved in their destiny. You root for the monster, you empathize even as his depravity sickens you. It’s everything dark erotica should be.

So. A prowler is on the loose. A peeping Tom who has moved beyond just watching. He has started taking.

I flourish in the darkness. And for me, 3:15 is the quietest time of the night. Far beyond most people’s ability to stay up late, and too early for even the earliest riser. It’s when you are secure in your sleep, in the safety of your warm covers, when you think you are most alone. That’s when I come, when every last guard is down.

He moves from victim to victim but he’s yet to find the thing that will fill that void. Until he sees Vesper. Vesper is beautiful. But that’s not all that draws him to her. There’s more, and he wants it.

Maybe she wasn’t like the others. Maybe she was something in between people like them and people like me.

And even though he’s used to meticulous planning, Vesper is not like the rest. And for once, he doesn’t leave the victim, he takes her.

As you can see, I’m trying very hard not to give you the story. The reason is that I went in blind, and so should you. I will tell you that this is right up there with the best books I’ve read, and even more so in this genre. Initially ,I thought it was very much like Comfort Food, particularly the conditioning. But then it became much much more. Comfort Food is a short story that left me slightly unfulfilled – wanting to fill in the gaps of the characters lives before and after. This one shows you how the monster was born. It takes you through both the villain and the victim’s lives and so, for me, it was a more complete experience.

And not only that, it is well written. The words flow, creating these deeply written characters. Vesper for one, is a sweet girl. Used to taking care of people but never really feeling taken care of. Which is why when she realizes someone is watching her, she’s afraid, but there’s some thrill intermingled with the fear.

I don’t know what this is. I don’t understand it. But every part of me wants it. To feel so strongly desired. To be cared for. To always be the singular focus of his attention. He’s brutal, but I am the focus of his obsession.

Then there’s the villain. He is brutal. Believe me when I tell you that the author pulls no punches. He is a nightmare in every way. He is dark and twisted and every trigger warning is at the heart of this book. He is on a hunt and no one is safe. But Vesper, she keeps him in line. She’s the one who holds the control. But what does this mean for Vesper? Being with a monster?

You don’t stare the devil in the eyes and come out without some of his sin. You can’t beat the devil without becoming like him. You can’t appeal to his kindness, so you have to learn to play his games. You lie, you fuck, you manipulate, you fight, you hurl insults, until you do whatever it takes to win the battle. Every time you do those things, you understand him a little more. Until finally, he becomes your ally. You think you’ve won, that you’ve made him more like you. But the truth is, it’s the other way around. So that even when you win, you’ve lost.

Again. What a book! Steamy in that way only dark erotica can be. Scary, so scary. And even though the author warns that there’s no light, if you’re like me, you’ll find that light and it will add to the devastation. There’s just nothing quite like this book.

5 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> Take Me With You by Nina G. Jones

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Posted in Dark Erotica, Dark Romance | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment