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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

117) Seventh Grace and No Body by Darynda Jones

The Blurb :

Twelve. Twelve of the deadliest beasts ever forged in the fires of hell have escaped onto our plane, and they want nothing more than to rip out the jugular of Charley Davidson and serve her lifeless, mangled body to Satan for dinner. So there’s that. But Charley has more on her plate than a mob of testy hellhounds.
For one thing, her father has disappeared, and the more she retraces his last steps, the more she learns he was conducting an investigation of his own, one that has Charley questioning everything she’s ever known about him. Add to that an ex-BFF who is haunting her night and day, a rash of suicides that has authorities baffled, and a drop-dead sexy fiancĂ© who has attracted the attentions of a local celebrity, and Charley is not having the best week of her life.

A tad north of hell, a hop, skip, and a jump past the realm of eternity, is a little place called Earth, and Charley Davidson, grim reaper extraordinaire, is determined to do everything in her power to protect it.

We’re doomed.

My Thoughts :

I am having a good reading week!  So many great books have been released and I am reading them straight away and leaving my to be read pile to grow out of control!  But some books just need to read or listen to as soon as possible.

The Charley Davidson series a pre-order and must read series.  It is also a must listen to series.  The narrator is amazing and I couldn't read these books without the audio version.  Yes it takes me a week to listen to the whole story and reading the book would only take a day but the quality and performance is just too good and unforgettable.   It makes the story even more fun and enjoyable.

The seventh book in the series is just as wit and action filled as the previous six.  There are shenanigans with handcuffs, some hellhounds and also a few weird departed thrown in.  There are some death related surprises and twists that will leave a huge scar while there are some interesting relationship developments.  There is the BEP (you will know what I mean when you have read the book) and the 12 to worry about as well as a strange bout of suicides and empty graves.  There is never a dull moment and there is always a good helping of sarcasm and minor confusion to make things more exciting.   It is all fun and games when Charley is involved.

So I don't want to give anything away because this is a series best served without spoilers but you really don't want to miss this installment.  If you haven't tried this series yet then I can only highly recommend it and beg you to listen to the audio version if you like listening to books.  It really is worth the time and definitely worth the effort.  But be warned!  This is really hilarious at times and you may want to be careful listening to this in public.  Laughing out loud and making funny giggling noises is very possible.

Now the wait starts again.  I think I saw somewhere that book eight arrives in May.  So not a really long wait but still too long!  Wishes for book eight :  Please finally give us more info on Mr Wong!  Make a little time jump so BEP is bigger.  Oh and we need more Amber.  She has so many more awkward questions she could ask Auntie Charley!                        









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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Contest Reminder



There is still an author contest open for entries!  Have you already entered? 

Check out the guest blog and the other tour/author info here!

You can also find the giveaway widget on this page!

Monday, October 27, 2014

116) Demon's Vow by Jocelynn Drake

The Blurb :


Tattoo artist and warlock Gage is having a rough week. He’s trying to track down a mysterious murderer in Low Town while also chasing a powerful entity using forbidden Death Magic across the nation. When Gage discovers the two forces may be trying to unite, the stakes get even higher. With Gideon’s help, Gage is determined to stop the murderers before anyone else gets hurt – including his girlfriend, Trixie.

My Thoughts :

I enjoyed the first full length novels in The Asylum Tales and have been eagerly awaiting the release of the final installment.  Split into three parts, each released within a week of each other, this series really wants to go out in a special way!  It is sad that thing are coming to an end but I always have to admire authors who find a way to finish a series and also let go of something they have created and spent so much time and energy on.

Jocelynn Drake really put a lot of time and effort into the first books in The Asylum Tales and she hasn't slacked off for the big finale.  This second novella size story is full of excitement, mystery and revelations that made the ones in the first part, Demon's Fury, look lame.  There is so much going on in the story so far and I can't believe that it will all come to an end in the next part.  .

There was a nasty cliffhanger in this second part and there are some strange happenings too.  Things are progressing nicely but I can't believe that this will all be over by the end of the third and final part.  There are so many questions that need to be answered and although I am sure everything will end up being connected, the threads of the story are still not really tying up together yet.

This series is so different and delicious you will have to try it to believe it.  Very urban, generously filled with fantasy and a good helping of the paranormal, the concept is interesting and compelling.  Writing from the male perspective can't be easy but the writer seems to have done a great job (would need a guys opinion to be sure) and it must have been a challenge to make it work.

If you haven't already tried this series then start at the beginning because there is no way you can start here.  If you have already read the previous books then you need to get hold of the three final pieces of the puzzle.  Two are already available with the last part coming this Monday.  Be warned : I am not sure but it looks like the books are only available as e-books.  So get a Kindle app for any of your devices and suck it up if you aren't a Kindle lover.  You won't want to miss this finale.



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Sunday, October 26, 2014

115) Penumbra by Keri Arthur

The Blurb :

Agent Sam Ryan wants out of the Special Investigations Unit. She’s sick of the attitude from her partner, Gabriel Stern. She’s sick of the paperwork. Most of all, she’s sick of feeling lonely. But her boss isn’t about to let her go that easily. He gives Sam a choice: either stay stuck in her office or guard a clone replacement of Dan Wetherton, a government minister. Sam reluctantly chooses the latter—even though she suspects she’s being used as bait to draw out the SIU’s elusive nemesis.

Gabriel would like nothing better than to be on his own, without a partner to hold him back. Then he learns that Sam has been assigned to protect Wetherton—or whatever it is that’s replaced him. Wetherton’s clone could have come from only one place: Hopeworth, the military base that contains the secrets of Sam’s past. Determined to protect her, Gabriel is drawn into a fight against unspeakable evil. And all too soon, Sam and Gabriel discover that the connection between them is far more powerful than anyone could ever have imagined.

My Thoughts :

What a disappointment.  Not a good sentence to start off a review but it is the first thing that springs to mind and I have to get out there.  I was excited to see the Spook Squad being re-released after all this time and was really happy to finally get to read this trilogy by an author I have enjoyed for years.  The first two books were interesting, original and full of promise.  The suspense has been building since the beginning. Would they get together?  What is Sam?  So many questions unanswered and lots of mystery from the first two books could only be answered in this final installment.  And thats where the disappointment comes in.

It was pretty obvious as the story progressed that the story wasn't moving along fast enough.  Those questions weren't getting answered and more were appearing with nearly every move the characters made.  It was great writing, the story and plot full of everything you need and none of that romance, girlie feeling stuff and long decisions and conversations.  However as the book progressed I started to worry.  The ending would be a rush job.

So imagine my surprise when the story just didn't finish!  Sure there was a little closure but where is book four?  I mean there has to be another installment!  It wasn't over and I felt cheated.  A small epilogue with an attempt to end things happily but none of the joy of finding out how things really ended up how they did and basically a cliffhanger epilogue!  There were, imho, lots of unfinished business, questions and conversations.

How could this 'trilogy' get re-released without the author giving it a better ending or adding a fourth book to tie things up properly!?  A novella would also be welcome but it seems that is it for the Spook Squad and who cares if you spent all that time getting to know and like the characters.  It doesn't matter that the story was well written and unique because the ending just didn't happen.

Fans of the author will be happy to read this series and see how Keri Arthur has always managed to come up with original and compelling stories. Although I am sure, like me, anyone who reads this series will also feel cheated and annoyed by the quick unfinished ending that is an insult to the reader who has invested so much into the story.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

114) Demon's Fury by Jocelynn Drake

The Blurb :

Powerful warlock and tattoo artist Gage has managed to escape the magical Ivory Towers who terrorize the rest of humans and monsters – but at a price. Now he must join forces with his nemesis Gideon to stop an unknown entity who is using old magic to commit gruesome murders. And if that’s not keeping him busy enough, an investigator recruits Gage to help her track a killer … who might be targeting tattoo artists.

My Thoughts :

I enjoyed the first full length novels in The Asylum Tales and have been eagerly awaiting the release of the final installment.  Split into three parts, each released within a week of each other, this series really wants to go out in a special way!  It is sad that thing are coming to an end but I always have to admire authors who find a way to finish a series and also let go of something they have created and spent so much time and energy on.

Jocelynn Drake really put a lot of time and effort into the first books in The Asylum Tales and she hasn't slacked off for the big finale.  This novella size story is full of excitement, mystery and revelations which means that the next two parts will end up being read before anything else on my 'to be read' pile.  I can't wait to see how the author will leave Gage and the other characters.  She has really done a great job with Demon's Fury and it can only get better in the next two books.

This series is so different and delicious you will have to try it to believe it.  Very urban, generously filled with fantasy and a good helping of the paranormal, the concept is interesting and compelling.  Writing from the male perspective can't be easy but the writer seems to have done a great job (would need a guys opinion to be sure) and it must have been a challenge to make it work.

If you haven't already tried this series then start at the beginning because there is no way you can start here.  If you have already read the previous books then you need to get hold of the three final pieces of the puzzle.  Two are already available with the last part coming this Monday.  Be warned : I am not sure but it looks like the books are only available as e-books.  So get a Kindle app for any of your devices and suck it up if you aren't a Kindle lover.  You won't want to miss this finale.



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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

To Be Read & Currently Reading

I haven't posted my To Be Read & Currently Reading for a while and have no idea why!!  I have thought about it a couple of times but somehow I keep forgetting about it!

So apologies for not keeping you up to date!  Here is the dreaded TBR pile and the amazing reads I currently have going on!


Currently Listening :

I love this series and I couldn't wait for this new release.  I even went a couple of days without listening to an audio book because I was waiting for this one to release and knew I wouldn't be able to fit another book in before this one came out.

It took me a while to get this one on to my phone yesterday using the Audible app.  It just didn't want to work.  I would have put it straight onto my iPod but the book hadn't been released when I left for work!  Stupid time difference!

However it is all worth the trouble and frustration!  The narrator is, as always, making the story even more funny and amazing.  The story is, as always, compelling and amusing.

This has to be one of my favourite series ever and it is definitely my number one when it comes to audio versions.  I couldn't read this series because the audio edition is just too great!  I think I will be listening to this one on the weekend....instead of reading!



Currently Reading :


The Asylum Tales are awesome!  I was really sad to hear it was coming to an end but extremely excited to see that the final installment was being broken into three parts and released within weeks of each other.

This first part was released last week and part two came out this week.  The last part releases next week and I had all on pre-order to make sure I didn't miss them and that I could read them straight away.

As far as I know these books are only available on Kindle and maybe other e-formats and they seem to be three shorter stories that fit together as one last final installment.

I haven't actually started this one yet but it is definitely the next read on my list.  I don't care about the review books I have to read, this one goes to the top of the pile!



The Dreaded 'To Be Read' Pile :

There are a few books on this list that are ARC's I need to read and review but because they don't release for another couple of months/weeks.

Anyone paying attention will notice that this list has gotten longer and most of the books from last time are still on here.  I am a naughty person and keep reading the new stuff and neglecting the old stuff!

Portrait of a Dead GuyHot ButtonThe Midnight WitchQuick Study
Death by the Dozen












Tuesday, October 21, 2014

113) Otherworld Nights by Kelley Armstrong

The Blurb :

This short story collection will include many brand-new tales and others only previously available on Kelley Armstrong's website. Most of the stories will feature the werewolves of the Otherworld, Elena and Clay, Jeremy, Karl and other members of the American Pack. These are some of Kelley Armstrong's best-loved and most enduring characters, from bestselling books such as Bitten, Stolen and Frostbitten.

My Thoughts :

I usually hate anthologies and usually moan and groan about them afterward.  However an anthology with only Kelley Armstrong stories based in the Otherworld Series is nothing to gripe about.  It is something to celebrate and anticipate.

Due to my distaste for anthologies I have actually never (to my recollection) read any of the short stories in the Otherworld Nights collection.  So I was very eager to read this book and catch up with some of the characters again and see how they are doing.  To make the review easier to write I will address each story individually.

1) Demonology - Adam's mother discovers what he is.

Short but sweet.  This one left me wanting more but it was a nice to find out more about Adam and meet his Mother.

2) Stalked - Clay/Elena honeymoon story from "My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon"

This is the only story from the collection that I believe I have read before.  It felt familiar and if I go back and check my previous reads maybe I will find "My Big Fat Supernatural Honeymoon" on the list.

It was a good story and it was typical Elena and Clay.  They manage to be so close but fail to communicate well enough to enjoy their honeymoon.  It is amusing and cute at the same time.  A nice story about two of my favourite characters in the series.

3) Hidden - SubPress 2012 Elena/Clay novella

The was the longest and best story in the book.  Clay, Elena and the twins are getting ready for Christmas.  All alone in a cabin they come across a local mutt.  The story has some nice twists and turns and also brings up the 'when do we tell the children' question.

I really liked this story and it was like having another new episode in the Otherworld series.  A look at how things could have been.   Other members of the Pack show up as an added treat but the icing on the cake was getting to know the twins better.

Any fan of the series, who hasn't read this short story, should get this anthology just because of Hidden.  It makes the whole anthology worth reading and made me very happy.

4) Twilight - a Cass story from "Many Bloody Returns"

A story about Cassandra.  I guess the title is a little funny when you think this one is a vampire novella.  I didn't really care for this one and have never really liked the character.  It was interesting to find out more about her life but she made me want to stake her.

5) Chivalrous - Reese's backstory from SubPress's long sold-out "Tales of Dark Fantasy 2" (the Dec'14 SubPress graphic novella picks up this storyline)

I think this was my second favourite.  I can't remember much about Reese but I really enjoyed getting to know him and finding out more about his past.  This was a tragic story but it was a good look into the reasons Reese is the way he is.  He is mentioned/takes part in some of the other stories in this anthology and this background piece about him explains a lot.

6) Lucifer's Daughter - Hope/Karl story from "Blood Lite II: Overbite"

I really like Hope and Karl so I was happy to find them among the novellas in this collection.  Another short but sweet story this was over pretty quick but there was a lot of action and information.  Another enjoyable read and well worth checking out if you like these characters.

7) From Russia with Love - Elena bonus story included with hardcover of "Thirteen"

Another nice Elena story but it was over pretty quick.  I didn't understand why the whole being followed bit was so important but maybe I wasn't paying enough attention.

This story came across as the last look into the life of the Pack.  It could also be seen as the beginning of what is to come.  I don't know if Kelley intends on coming back to the Otherworld at some point but if she does this is the story she would have to continue from.  A nice ending but a hopeful future.

8) Vanishing Act - brand-new Savannah/Adam novella set after "Thirteen"

I like Savannah but this story didn't agree with me.  I am not sure why but I felt like I should have enjoyed it more.  Maybe I didn't put it in the right place in the series and it should have meant more to me.  Did it tie up some loose ends that I had forgotten about?

I plan on reading/listening (if I can get them all on audio!) the whole series again from start to finish and I definitely have to try and fit in the novellas too.

All in all this was a good collection of stories that are well worth reading if you are a fan of the series.  Check the stories first to see if you have read them before because you could end up being disappointed and re-reading novellas you already know.

Kelley Armstrong is a great writer and I thank her for putting this novellas together and look forward to another collection.  The Otherworld is one of my favourite series ever and I miss it like mad.  This anthology was a great present and a thoughtful idea.  I doubt I would have ever managed to read all of the stories in their original anthologies.



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