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I Belong

Review: White Tiger by Jennifer Ashley

August 9th, 2017 Roxanne Posted in Review Comments Off on Review: White Tiger by Jennifer Ashley

Title: White Tiger

Author: Jennifer Ashley

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Series: Shifters Unbound (Book #8)

Publication Date: April 5, 2016

Format: Paperback, 336 Pages

ISBN-10: 0425281353 (Berkley/Penguin)

ISBN-13: 978-0425281352 (Berkley/Penguin)

Reviewed by: Roxanne

Synopsis:

Wanted and on the run…

For twenty years, Kendrick, a white tiger Shifter, has been the Guardian of un-Collared Shifters who spend their lives living in secret—and in fear of being shunted into Shiftertowns. When Kendrick’s group is discovered and forced to flee, Kendrick is more desperate than ever to protect them
 
His only salvation was in a beautiful stranger.

In a diner in the middle of nowhere, lonely waitress Addison Price has seen a lot of unusual drifters come and go, but none has ever captivated—and intimidated—her like the imposing fugitive who wields a broadsword with incredible skill. But when he risks all to protect her, Addison’s fear turns to empathy—and empathy to desire as she learns more about her savior. Soon she’s more than willing to help the crushingly sensual white tiger and his cubs in a passionate bid for freedom. Whatever the cost.

Quick & Dirty: A white tiger, a human and his cubs are all on the run, and he will do anything to keep them free.

Opening Sentence: It was almost time.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Addie is working in a diner living a lonely existence when a mysterious man starts showing up every night around the same time. When he shows up late one night with his boys, she knows something is up, especially since he is carrying a real sword, but Addie is intrigued by him so she doesn’t freak out. That is until she goes to get him some pie and discovers the dishwasher dead. As soon as the killer notices her he begins to open fire, but the mysterious man is there to save her.

Addie learns that his name is Kendrick and he isn’t human like she is, two of his boys are tiger cubs and one is a wolf. They are all shifters, but Addie is so taken in by them that she agrees to help get the boys out and hide them. However, she is picked up by the cops after she met up with him and they find her without a lot of money in her pocket. Somehow though Kendrick knows what is going on and shows up pretending to be her lawyer and gets her released.

He knows he has to take her with him, but things are dangerous for Uncollared shifters and he worries that she will be dragged into their problems. But Addie doesn’t care, she is already falling for him and his son, and soon she is thrust straight into the dangerous world and helping them hide from everyone. Will Kendrick deny his feelings for her? Will Addie survive the battles ahead?

I haven’t read the whole series but I have read a couple of the other books and I always enjoy them. The dynamics of that world are just different enough to be really interesting. Plus, I loved that he had the family and their interactions with Addie were just so freaking good. It was really interesting to see the Uncollared side of things. I believe the other books I read were mostly focused on Shifters living in shiftertowns and they were all mostly collared.

I loved the romance too, it was a wonderful way to spend part of my afternoon.

Notable Scene:

In the front of the diner, every window shattered as bullets flew through them. Glass exploded through the open pass between the kitchen and dining area, as did bullets, shards of cups and plates, tatters of napkins. The kids, Addie thought in panic. Where were the boys? There they were huddled against the door to the freezer.

Shifters Unbound Series:

0.5 Shifter Made

1. Pride Mates

2. Primal Bonds

2.5 Bodyguard

3. Wild Cat

3.5 Hard Mated

4. Mate Claimed

4.5 Perfect Mate

4.6 Lone Wolf

5. Tiger Magic

5.5 Feral Heat

6. Wild Wolf

6.5 Bear Attraction

7. Mate Bond

7.25 Lion Eyes

7.5 Bad Wolf

7.75 Wild Things

8. White Tiger

9. Guardian’s Mate

10. Red Wolf 

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FTC Advisory: Berkley/Penguin provided me with a copy of White Tiger. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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Review: Heartstone by Elle Katherine White

August 8th, 2017 Roxanne Posted in Review 1 Comment »

Title: Heartstone

Author: Elle Katherine White

Genre: Fantasy

Series: N/A

Publication Date: January 17, 2017

Format: Paperback, 352 Pages

ISBN-10: 0062451944 (Harper Voyager)

ISBN-13: 978-0062451941 (Harper Voyager)

Reviewed by: Roxanne

Synopsis:

A debut historical fantasy that recasts Jane Austen’s beloved Pride & Prejudice in an imaginative world of wyverns, dragons, and the warriors who fight alongside them against the monsters that threaten the kingdom: gryphons, direwolves, lamias, banshees, and lindworms.

They say a Rider in possession of a good blade must be in want of a monster to slay—and Merybourne Manor has plenty of monsters.

Passionate, headstrong Aliza Bentaine knows this all too well; she’s already lost one sister to the invading gryphons. So when Lord Merybourne hires a band of Riders to hunt down the horde, Aliza is relieved her home will soon be safe again.

Her relief is short-lived. With the arrival of the haughty and handsome dragonrider, Alastair Daired, Aliza expects a battle; what she doesn’t expect is a romantic clash of wills, pitting words and wit against the pride of an ancient house. Nor does she anticipate the mystery that follows them from Merybourne Manor, its roots running deep as the foundations of the kingdom itself, where something old and dreadful slumbers . . . something far more sinister than gryphons.

It’s a war Aliza is ill-prepared to wage, on a battlefield she’s never known before: one spanning kingdoms, class lines, and the curious nature of her own heart.

Elle Katharine White infuses elements of Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic, crafting a modern epic fantasy that conjures a familiar yet wondrously unique new world.

Quick & Dirty: Dragons and love….

Opening Sentence: I’d never seen an angry hobgoblin before.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Aliza is excited to know that the Riders are on the way to the Manor House especially after the death of one of her sisters by the gryphons. Until she meets Alaister who is pompous and rude, I mean he kicked Tobble the hobgoblin. Of course because he is a rider the hobgoblins are forced to apologize. However, she loves his Dragon Akara, she is everything Aliza has ever imagined about dragons.

When a simple excursion results in them being attacked and another of her sisters hurt, Aliza knows that the Riders have to deal with the gryphons. Next time she will be better prepared, and Aliza kills her first gryphon while out searching for a herb with the Riders. Just when she thinks their problems might be over, she is drawn in a far stranger battle, one that she isn’t quite prepared for.

Aliaster declares his love for her, and Aliza is downright shocked and refuses his proposal beleiving him to be the reason her sister’s romance has failed. It’s not until after she is visited by his dragon that she realizes how wrong she has gotten everything, and soon Aliza is on a mission to fix it all.

I must admit, I missed the comparison to Pride and Prejudice when I read what the book was about so I was expecting fantasy/historical fantasy and was not expecting romance. It was by far more romance than fantasy, but I did like the whole proper English dragonriders. I think the hobgoblins might have been my favorite characters though. I thought this was okay for a debut. I probably would have liked it more if I hadn’t been expecting something different.

I did like Aliza and much like Elizabeth in P&P she isn’t afraid to fight or take a stand. I loved Alaister’s dragon, she was pretty awesome. Overall, this was an interesting re-do, and I liked it for the most part.

Notable Scene:

One by one, the hobgoblins dropped their missiles and skins back into the garden chirping their disappointment. I snuck a peek at Daired. Covered in mud and blisteringly angry, the mad was a sight to make gargoyles tremble. He wiped the remains of one lucky shot from the corner of his mouth and spat on the ground. “What did you tell them?

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FTC Advisory: Harper Voyager/HarperCollins provided me with a copy of Heartstone. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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Review: Wasteland King by Lilith Saintcrow

August 7th, 2017 Roxanne Posted in Review Comments Off on Review: Wasteland King by Lilith Saintcrow

Title: Wasteland King

Author: Lilith Saintcrow

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Series: Gallow and Ragged (Book #3)

Publication Date: July 26, 2016

Format: Paperback, 352 Pages

ISBN-10: 0316277916 (Orbit)

ISBN-13: 978-0316277914 (Orbit)

Reviewed by: Roxanne

Synopsis:

The thrilling conclusion to New York Times bestselling author Lilith Saintcrow’s dark fantasy series where the faery world inhabits diners, dive bars and trailer parks.

The plague has broken loose, the Wild Hunt is riding, and the balance of power in the sidhe realms is still shifting. The Unseelie King has a grudge against Jeremiah Gallow, but it will have to wait. For he needs Gallow’s services for a very delicate mission — and the prize for success is survival itself.

In order to save both Robin Ragged and himself, Gallow will have to do the unspeakable…

Quick & Dirty: In the epic conculsion Gallow will do the unthinkable to save Robin.

Opening Sentence: The assassin and the redhaired girl burst onto the shuttered dark fairway, and Crenn almost thought they had a shot at escaping unseen-until the shadows at the far end, under the Ferris wheel’s spidery bulk, birthed a cold gleam and clawed silvershod hoofbeats rang on packed dirt.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Crenn has just helped Robin escape from Summer, and held off Winter’s hunters.  Gallow awakes in Winter, the poison gone and makes a deal with Winter in order to save her. Before he leaves Winter, he pulls out the horn and uses it to call the Wild Hunt. He then takes off running to outwit them. Robin finds her way into Winter and also makes a deal with him, she must get the Jewel of Summer with Illara’s help.

The Slaugh are loose and Gallow is on a desperate run to stay ahead of them, when he runs into Crenn. Crenn decides to help Gallow stay alive and ahead of the Hunt when yet another of Summer’s knights joins them and helps them once Gallow tells him that Puck is dead. Robin hopes that Gallow is alive, but she knows that she must help Winter in order to stop the war that is happening.

UnWinter has unfurled the black flags of war, and led Winter to war against Summer. The plague is still running rampant throughout both courts, and UnWinter suspects that Summer is behind it and he will have his vengeance no matter the cost. It all leads to a final showdown with Gallow, UnWinter, Summer and Robin. Will Gallow’s choice cost them everything? Will Robin be able to get Summer’s Jewel?

I enjoyed this one. I only have two minor complaints or make that three. First, the trilogy is kind of a slow burn, it is filled with action, but it doesn’t seem to make much progress until this book and then it all gets wrapped up in a hurry. Which, leads to my second complaint, I was a tad unsatisfied with the ending. I wanted more. My last complaint is Gallow does all this stuff to save Robin, and so does Crenn and yet zero romance… I mean none that was kind of hard. Granted Gallow and Robin spend the majority of all three books being no where near each other. I just wanted something between them.

Overall, I enjoyed every minute of this series. I enjoyed the main characters, even if I didn’t necessarily understand what motivated them. I liked the twists and changes, and I really liked that the Half were so prominent and powerful in this trilogy.

Notable Scene:

Silver-glinting, curled and chambered the Horn grew heavier, neck-chain thickening as it took its true shape. The Steward hissed and fell back, and Gallow didn’t even feel good about the way the other sidhe ran pell-mell for the interior of the Keep adn whatever precarious safety the black lacework bulk of stone could provide. He tipped the Horn back and forth, watching the play of light on its surfaces, as he stepped over Unwinter’s threshold and onto the bridge.

Gallow and Ragged Series:

1. Trailer Park Fae

2. Roadside Magic

3. Wasteland King

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FTC Advisory: Orbit provided me with a copy of Wasteland King. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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Review: Legends and Liars by Julia Knight

August 6th, 2017 Roxanne Posted in Review Comments Off on Review: Legends and Liars by Julia Knight

Title: Legends and Liars

Author: Julia Knight

Genre: Fantasy/Science Fiction

Series: The Duelist Trilogy (Book #2)

Publication Date: November 10, 2015

Format: Paperback, 400 Pages

ISBN-10: 0316375012 (Orbit)

ISBN-13: 978-0316375016 (Orbit)

Reviewed by: Roxanne

Synopsis:

Legends and Liars is the second book in the Duelist’s trilogy — a fast-paced adventure from one of the most exciting new talents in fantasy.

Vocho and Kacha are brother and sister, and between them they’ve got quite a reputation. They were once know for the finest swordplay in the city of Reyes. The only problem is, ever since they were thrown out of the Duelist’s Guild for accidentally killing a man they were sworn to protect, it seems everyone wants them dead. Including a dark magician whose plans they recently thwarted…

Now Vocho and Kacha are in the midst of an uneasy truce, not sure whether to trust each other, or anyone else for that matter. What’s more, the sinister magician is rumored to have returned. Now he knows who was behind the failure of his last plan, he’s determined to put a stop to Vocho and Kacha permanently.

And this time, the flash of steel may not be enough to save them.

Quick & Dirty: The game is a foot and it will take every skill Vocho and Kacha have to stay alive this time.

Opening Sentence: Vocho threw the dice and loudly cursed himself for a fool.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Vocho and Kacha are on the run and trying to stay ahead of their various enemies. Kacha is still reeling and thinking of Petri, and when Dom brings her a letter from him she slowly starts to piece together everything. Meanwhile, Petri is doing everything he can to stay relevant and alive. Bakar seems to be completely losing it and Petri knows that this is a dangerous position for him to be in. Alicia, like every one else is trying to find and tie all the pieces together but really for her own agenda not, Sabates.

When Vocho and Kacha run into Esti, who claims to be able to help them, especially in the case of the tattoo Vocho has, they agree to help her. During the course of stealing an item for her, they find that she isn’t really all that trustworthy and was working for Sabates herself. Alicia is able to locate them and through them she hopes to locate Dom. Meanwhile, Petri has run out of luck and Bakar threw him in the dungeons to the mercy of the guild master.

Soon all the pieces are coming together, but Vocho and Kacha don’t know who to trust, everyone has there own agenda. And they will all kill to see their goals achieved. Can Vocho and Kacha finally get their proof? Will they find Petri before it’s too late? Will their trust in Dom prove to be an error?

It’s been awhile since I read the first book, but I feel like this one had more viewpoints than the first book. Still a lot going on and still interesting. Julia spins a story without getting bogged down in the details. My favorite kind of fantasy, sometimes the information dumps can be brutal and add pages of unnecessary reading. I am kind of sad at how some things turned out, and didn’t get enough Petri in this one. I am reviewing book 3, so I am excited to see how she ends this trilogy.

I still love Vocho and Kacha. This book required a lot more of them than sword skills and I think both of them really rose to the occasion. Some pretty epic fight scenes and lots of dying!

Notable Scene:

Dom left suddenly as he’d appeared, leaving Vocho confused and Kass looking at a bundle of papers as though they were snakes about to bite. Vocho hoped she threw them into the fire. Petri bloody Egimont. Vocho had hoped he could live the rest of his life without ever coming across that name again, but no here he was, even when he wasn’t. Stirring Kass up just when Vocho had thought she was mellowing.

The Duelist Trilogy:

1. Swords and Scoundrels

2. Legends and Liars

3. Warlords and Wastrels

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FTC Advisory: Orbit provided me with a copy of Legends and Liars. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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Review: Blade Dance by D.L. McDermott

August 5th, 2017 Roxanne Posted in Review Comments Off on Review: Blade Dance by D.L. McDermott

Title: Blade Dance

Author: D.L. McDermott

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Series: Cold Iron (Book #4)

Publication Date: September 21, 2015

Format: eBook, 315 Pages

ISBN-10: 1501106465 (Simon & Schuster)

ISBN-13: 978-1501106460 (Simon & Schuster)

Reviewed by: Roxanne

Synopsis:

Boston schoolteacher Ann Phillips knows better than to trust the Fae, but when one of her second graders turns up to class with both arms covered in magical tattoos, she has no choice but to turn to Finn MacUmhaill, the dangerous and charismatic Fae crime lord who controls Charlestown, for help.

Finn MacUmhaill, leader of the Fianna, has had his eye on Ann Phillips for months, but a recent showdown with an old enemy has left his house broken. Between the crippling blow dealt to the Fianna and his son’s recent defection, he hasn’t had time to woo the pretty redhead. When she turns up on his doorstep asking for his help, he thinks he’s found the way to win her, but before he can act, the child goes missing, kidnapped by a rogue Druid who has discovered the key to destroying the wall between worlds.

Now, Finn and Ann must ally themselves with an old adversary—the treacherous Prince Consort—to save the boy, or risk the destruction of the wall that keeps the corrupt Fae Queen and her Court at bay…

Quick & DirtyAnn finds herself caught up in the war between the Fae and the Druids.

Opening Sentence: At the front of the line Sally O’Dwyer jumped up and down.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Ann and her class is on a field trip when she notices that Davin seems to be hot and not feeling well. When Ann and Mrs. Hanley pull him aside and remove his hoodie they find fresh tattoos all over his arms. Ann immediatley wants to report them to Child Services, but Mrs. Hanley tells her they can’t do anything for he is one of them. Ann has no clue what Mrs.Hadley means by “them” until she says Fair Folk.

Ann then turns to Finn for help with Davin’s situation. He is already of aware of it through Davin’s mother, but before he can handle everything the boy disappears. His father Sean then kidnapps Ann in order to find him, but they are all in for a surprise because it turns out she is a berzerker. Soon they have to turn to an old enemy in order to track the Druid that took Davin. Along the way Finn and Ann fall in deeper and deeper.

Soon their love is on fire, but the danger is getting stronger. Will Finn be able to save Ann and keep the wall intact? Will they be able to give into their love?

I have enjoyed this series, it’s interesting and different. I like the addition of the druids especially with some being good and some being evil. This series took quite the turn when Finn allied himself with the Prince. I was totally shocked by that, but I liked it. It worked and I loved Ann and I really like how each one of the girls is something different. I really loved that she was a Berzerker, I just wish she would have kicked a little more butt then she did.

This was a great quick read, nothing like romance and Fae to pass the afternoon. I sort of felt like the next book was being set up, but I don’t see anything for a fifth book out there. I hope the author does continue with the series, I would love to see where it goes in the end.

Notable Scene:

There was some truth in what Mrs. Hanley was saying. Supernatural or not, Ann knew that Finn and his gang were dangerous. She’d learned that much the day she had gone to his house. The other teachers’ warnings hadn’t deterred Ann. She had a keen sense of right and wrong, of what was fair. And, to be honest, she had a temper, too.

Cold Iron Series:

1. Cold Iron

2. Silver Skin

3. Stone Song

4. Blade Dance

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FTC Advisory: Pocket Star/Simon & Schuster provided me with a copy of Blade Dance. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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