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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Book Review – Safeword (Power Exchange #2) – AJ Rose

I’d been missing some MM action so I decided to try this series (seeing as so many people had rated it so highly). I’d noticed that book #2 was getting all the 5 stars while a lot of people agreed that book #1 kinda lacked the mystery element. So what did my silly self do? I decided to start with book #2, bad bad mistake, but we’ll get to that.

This is the story of Gavin Degrassi, a detective with the St. Louis precinct. Book #2 starts with the after effects of what happened to Gavin in book #1. Seeing as I didn’t read book #1, I will say that while reading the book you do put the pieces together. I feel like the author recapped enough to give you the gist of the story in book #1. But I will also say that it annoyed me that I hadn’t read book #1 because a lot of what happens to Gavin in this book is him dealing with things the reader can only know in full if they read book #1.

But anyway, so Gavin went through a horrific year, dealing with a serial killer who kidnapped him and his boyfriend (and Dom) Ben. You would imagine after what he went through he would have a quiet year but no. He has another serial killer on the loose. And the worst thing is that this one is killing cops and seems to have it in for Gavin. Gavin and his partner Myah are assigned to the case. And the book is the whodunit type where the reader is kept guessing trying to figure out who the killer is.

I loved the mystery. I mean, I used to be a huge Jeffrey Deaver and James Patterson fan so I love solving crimes in the comfort of my living room 🙂 While it was gory, it was also so well done that you couldn’t really figure it out. I liked that it wasn’t drawn out. It wasn’t as if things were being held up so the book could be longer. Everything flowed well and it took me to the edge of my seat a couple of times.

Meanwhile, Gavin is still trying to come to terms with what happened to him (in book #1). See Gavin is a sub. His Dom Ben is trying to help him but Gavin is dealing with touch aversion and so their sex life is suffering. Gavin does start healing though and things in the bedroom become very creative. I mean, it was hot. I love BDSM books which are well done and this one was. These two were hot together. But this book is more mystery than sex, so these scenes were few and far between. As somebody who was looking for the latter, I did feel a bit disappointed :/

Overall a good book. The mystery is well done and the sex scenes are hot. But my advise would be to read book #1. You get to see how Gavin and Ben came to be and that’s something I would have loved to see. I would go back and read it but my problem was, as well written as the book was, it didn’t have enough sex scenes. And this is not the book’s fault, but mine. I mean, I was looking for Erotica and ended up with Romantic Suspense. Also, I made the wrong choice of starting with Book #2 which means I missed out on how these two fell in love. So all these factors combined made sure I could put the book down. It took me a week to read and normally it takes me 3 days maximum, and sometimes a day if I really can’t put the book down.

All this to say, it was a case of it’s me not you.

3 stars

Amazon Buy Link -> Safeword by AJ Rose

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Book Review – One Hot December – Tiffany Reisz

Tiffany Reisz is a god amongst mere mortals. Fact. Her Original Sinners series is pure perfection. Fact. I, like anyone else I know who’s read her books, is in love with her writing – her wit and her ability to infuse the darkest tales with such light and humor. So when I saw this book, I immediately snatched it up and read it in a day and a half.

What’s it about? Veronica Redding is a welder and an artist. People have nicknamed her Flash, after Flashdance 🙂 Flash is in love with her boss Ian Asher. Flash and Ian slept together but then Ian dumped her. So now Flash is intent on making Ian regret that decision. And regret it he does. Ian wants Flash but can’t have her when he’s still her boss. So when Flash quits, Ian get the perfect opportunity to pursue her.

I should have already told from the cover and the Harlequin logo that this would be one of those sweet short holiday reads. The kind that introduced me to the romance genre when I was a teenager. Having read a million books since then, I should have stayed away from this one, but it was Tiffany Reisz, so I went in anyway.

The problem with these short Harlequin reads is that the backstory is never fully explored. It is told to us in a few short paragraphs. The love is instantaneous and I felt as if I walked into the story halfway and someone caught me up very quickly. Also, they end pretty fast and everything is tied up very neatly. I’m just not a fan of this concept. I like angst, I like when characters bleed for each other. I love it when characters have to work hard to get to the happy ending. There was none of that here. If you’ve read The Original Sinners, then you know just how much the characters have to fight for happiness.

Another thing is that I’m drawn to Tiffany Reisz’ books for three reasons. I read these books for the wit, the pain and the unconventional nature of the story. I’ve admittedly come to associate Tiffany Reisz with those three things. So when I read this book, I expected the wit (and I got it), I expected pain and that something extra. I unfortunately did not get that. I got a conventional short story that I suppose is meant to be read at Christmas around the fireplace with a cup of hot chocolate. All well and good but just not Tiffany Reisz to me.

That said, it is a sweet story meant to warm your heart around my favorite holiday. It’s classic contemporary romance with a bit of BDSM thrown in. We have a strong heroine (wouldn’t expect anything less from Tiffany Reisz) and a handsome good hero. We have humor and steam which is my perfect combination. I think that if it had been written by any other author I might not have expected so much out of it. But maybe if it had been written by any other author I wouldn’t have picked it up in the first place.

3 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> One Hot December by Tiffany Reisz

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

 

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Book Review – Blood & Roses Series – Callie Hart

I might be the last person in the world to read this series, but just in case I’m not, here is why I loved it so much and why you should buy it immediately.

First of all, I had actually read Deviant book #1 in the series when it was a freebie on Amazon. I loved it. In my review, I lamented that I wished it was longer, but that I couldn’t wait to read more. But as it happens with short stories, you read so many you lose track. Then one day I see the entire box set is out and for 99c! Had to have it. Yet again as anyone with having a 1-click addiction will tell you, we buy a lot of books, particularly while they’re on sale, which leaves us with hundreds of books in our kindles. So months later, I’m trying to decide what to read, I have one criteria, dark(ish), incredibly steamy and hopefully, has an amazing storyline to go with it. I stumbled across the Blood and Roses thumbnail on my kindle and stopped. So so glad I did!!!

So the boxset contains all 6 books, that’s over 800 pages! It sounded daunting at first, but the longest book I’d read prior to this was 600+ pages of brilliance, so… not so daunting after all. It took me 3 weeks to read this one (full-time job, second blog, baby, husband…) but it was the most incredible 3 weeks of book reading. So let’s get to the synopsis.

Sloan Romera is looking for her younger sister Alexis. She pays an undercover investigator to do the work. The investigator, a shady fella, tells Sloan that she will have to have sex with some guy in exchange for information. Sloan agrees to it, despite all that she’ll lose in the process, it will be worth it to find her sister. Needless to say, she doesn’t get the information she needs. She does however have the most incredible sexual encounter of her life.

Some years pass and Sloane is still looking for her sister. And it turns out her only hope might be the guy she slept with. See, Sloane is a doctor, and a good girl. She knows nothing about the seedy underbelly of Chicago. She needs someone who does. Zeth Mayfair. And that’s how they’re thrown back together, fighting the mafia, biker gangs, getting shot at and indulging in their attraction to each other 🙂

Let’s start with the steam – SCORCHING! I mean, these two were something else. Zeth is dark and dangerous and into BDSM. Sloane is sweet and his complete opposite in everyday, so it was all about Zeth taking charge and wowza. Sometimes when you read an incredibly long book you find that the sex scenes are too few and far between. Or you could go ahead and buy an erotic short where it’s one sex scene after the other. I find that I love the in-between. That in-between is hard to achieve but Callie Hart did it.

Then the suspense or the grittier side of the book. What I loved most was that the author didn’t hold back in making Zeth the anti-hero. Maybe anti-hero isn’t the exact word but you read a lot of these romance books with dark heroes who from the very beginning start to reform. Or who are never really that dark so the reader can always find ways to find him redeemable. Not Zeth. Seth is a mafia enforcer. He kills for a living. So yes, the book had violence, and murder. Half the time I felt like I was watching an episode of The Sopranos.

Then 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.

And last but not least, the love. I absolutely loved that it wasn’t some instalove kind of thing. It was gradual and it was well done. And when a man like Zeth starts falling…

… her arms lace around my neck, clinging onto me, my heart starts thumping in my chest. It’s like it’s been lying dormant in my chest, gathering dust the past thirty-three years and this is the very first time it’s properly beating.

But of course it takes some time. It takes some mistakes and some learning but in the end, I loved how meant to be they were. Nothing could beat that.

An incredible story. Wonderfully written. It got my heart racing, I cried sometimes, I laughed out loud, I swooned… It had everything I love in a book.

5 stars!

Amazon Buy Link -> The Blood and Roses Series by Callie Hart

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Book Review -Fire & Dark (Night Horde SoCal #3) – Susan Fanetti

I’m bound to start every Susan Fanetti book review by reminding everyone what amazing books Move the Sun and Behold the Stars were! Up there with my favorite books of all time! So I use that as my standard for every book she writes. And some of the others have been just as good. Touch for example, brilliant brilliant book. Fire & Dark? Not so much.

But first a synopsis. Connor Elliot is Hoosier’s son and Sergeant at Arms of the Night Horde MC. He’s 36, and prefers them young. We’re speaking 18 to 21 age bracket. He just doesn’t want complications and the young ones are easier. Until he meets Pilar Cordero. Pilar is a firefighter. Much too ballsy and bold for the kind he goes after but she’s hot and she’s definitely not shy. Pilar goes for what she wants and she wants Connor. Just for sex though. She uses sex to forget all the crap she sees at work and she’s set her eyes on Connor. Only Connor is exactly her type. And they both start feeling much too much, much too soon.

Susan Fannetti is one of my guaranteed ‘must-read’ authors. And while this one wasn’t her best, it wasn’t bad either. See, she writes gritty biker books. She doesn’t shy away from the edgy stuff and she certainly doesn’t over romanticize biker life. They’re outlaws, they kill, that’s that. But this one felt too soft for me.

They fall in love too soon. I loved how in other books she made the characters fight for it. In this one there was some fight but only a halfhearted one. They saw each other and fell for each other. Life did give them a humongous bridge to cross but they crossed it with hardly any problems. I mean, that whole Hugo thing should have been near insurmountable but it was resolved in too few pages.

The sex is also usually hotter than it was here. I mean I still remember scenes from Move the Sun… wowza! But this one… sigh. I mean, Pilar had a particular kink, and I’m never one to judge, to each his own and all that, but man was she confusing to me. If I were a man I’d probably run the opposite direction. I mean she had too many rules, she didn’t want to be called Pilar, she wanted it hard, but not that hard… I mean come on! .

But I have got to say, even though this was not the best book I’ve read, it’s only because Susan Fanetti has written such amazing books. I can only judge this one from the benchmark set and Move the Sun is the highest benchmark one can set. So saying that, it was a sweet read… for contemporary romance. It wasn’t as gritty, as edgy, as deep as the other books I’ve read from this author, but it was kinda sweet. It’s not super memorable but it had its moments and for that I give it…

3 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> Fire and Dark by Susan Fanetti

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Book Review -Softer Than Steel (Love &Steel #2) -Jessica Topper

I fell so deep in love with Louder than Love! It was one of those unexpected finds that bind you to an author. So I spent the last couple of months googling Softer than Steel to make sure I wouldn’t miss its release. I did, but that’s besides the point 🙂 I finally got to read it and for those who like to know from the get go whether I loved a book or not I will say this, it was not Louder than Love, but it has its appeal.

Softer than Steel is the story of Rick Rottenburg, or if you’d like, Riff Rotten 🙂 Riff lost the love of his life Simone to cancer. She was everything to him and saying that he lost his will to really live would not be a stretch. However, now that he has his best friend Adrian back and his band reunited. He has started finding a lot to live for. Unfortunately for him, Adrian is not living and breathing the band as he used to. He’s in love. And Rick is not as thrilled about that. Add to that the panic attacks and Rick knows he has to do something to save himself. That’s how he ends up in a yoga studio with the gorgeous half Indian, half Irish instructor Sidra. Sidra is done dating musicians however. Her last love attempt with a musician left her heratbroken so she’s done with that. But Rick is something else… and so their story begins 🙂

I was so excited to start this book! Like I said, I’d been waiting for such a long time for it to come out. And maybe I built up too many expectations because it sadly didn’t live up to them. Was it well written? Incredibly. The author has this way of paying attention to detail. It really makes you feel like these are real people and not just fictional characters. The way they talk to each other and laugh and love, its detailed and beautiful. That said, I’m not a yoga fan. i mean I have nothing against yoga, I gave it a try when i was pregnant and it just wasn’t my thing. So all the detail in the book about the yoga just sort of lost me. I wanted to skim through it but that would have been skimming half the book.

The misunderstanding between Rick and Sidra on the building could also have been avoided. I don’t mind miscommunication being the central tension point of the story. I love angst in any form. But this just felt like it could have been avoided from the get go. So when it hit i couldn’t help but roll my eyes. And then it took them forever to resolve it… sigh. Lastly on my list of critique is the lack of steam. Adrian and Kat had it in spades, I just couldn’t get into Rick and Sidra. i mean i get it, this is a contemporary romance story, not erotica, but I always need some heat in the book for me to love it and this one just lacked in that department. I mean, it could be a case of me not you but well…

All that said, I will repeat that this author has a way with words. I love how the British guy sounds British all way through. How the characters are so well rounded. How the details make the book. It’s a journey with her. It’s not churning out 50 books a year, its taking time to craft a story and this author does that. It just didn’t work as well for me this time.

3 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> Softer than Steel by Jessica Topper

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Book Review – The Anatomy of Jane (WJM #1) – Amelia LeFay

This is the kind of book I’m never sure how to rate. On the one hand, an intriguing story with thought out characters. On the other, needs a lot of editing.

Let’s start with the story. We have Jane. Jane was abandoned at birth and now works at a strip club as everything else other than a stripper. Jane quits after finding out that the owner of the strip club is engaged in dirty business. She becomes a maid and that’s how she meets Max and Wes. Both handsome, both rich, both gay. But turns out they both want her…

“Max was the first person to ever capture my attention like this and now here she was like a damn hurricane I couldn’t ignore.”

.. and it becomes a very steamy menage 🙂 But despite the steamy steamy sex, the problems start piling up. Can they love each other equally? Is that possible?

“You can’t like two people equally,” she whispered as I leaned into her.

“Watch me.”

 Is it even necessary to figure that out?

How do you measure how much you love someone? If they were both hanging off a cliff and I could only choose one, I’d join them on the cliff and hope we could go together. I can’t divide myself from them.

And one other problem, due to Max’s status in society, he kinda has to keep the whole menage thing hidden… he’s already kept the gay thing hidden for years. It’s all okay because Jane is enjoying it and it has to come to an end some time, right? And Wes is okay being the undercover lover, right?

And there we have quite the intriguing storyline. I mean, it kept me hooked even when the typos tried to force me to quite. Yes, quite some misspelled words and generally the book is begging to be edited. That said, its witty and the characters are thought out. I was surprised to find myself at 90% and when I was done I was rushing to find the next book because we have huge cliffhangers. To my disappointment, it will only be released in December. So I will be waiting for book #2. I’m really hoping it’s edited this time because if it’s just as good as this one AND edited? Definitely one to watch.

3 stars.

Amazon Buy Link -> The Anatomy of Jane by Amelia LeFay

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