Melanie's Book Reviews

Reviewer @ I'm a married mum with 2 grown up children, I have agoraphobia so I have a ton of time to read and that is my passion and I spend way too much money on books :) I love gossiping about books ( well gossiping in general ;P ) and find I'm usually easy pleased where books are concerned. My reviews are about the enjoyment a book has brought me, I'm not the grammar police - all I want is a HEA!

{Review} Locked in Stone (Hearts of Stone #1) by Tory Michaels

Locked in Stone (Entangled Covet) - Tory Michaels

Locked in Stone is a great paranormal romance and as the title would suggest…. Has Gargoyles!
As the synopsis tells us, Rose Johnson is forced to ask for protection from the Sentinels after the death of her adoptive mother and presuming that she is next. The Sentinels are more than happy to help when it is revealed that she is a Gargoyle and a special one at that. Rose has always been lead to believe that she is the last Gargoyle alive and that the Sentinels are the enemy but she needs their help in finding a stone that holds her adoptive mothers’ soul so that her secret remains intact. It doesn’t help that the first Sentinel she comes upon is the one who should have protected her real mother when she was a child.
Cal Levesque is a Sentinel who never forgave himself for the death of Rose’s family, he was meant to protect them and he is stunned to find Rose standing there when she had been presumed dead for years. She is no longer the young girl he used to know, she is now a woman who is more than capable of looking after herself but everything in him screams that she must be protected…. Not to mention the electric connection they seem to share. When they decide to help Rose with her mission he sees it as a chance to finally prove that he can do his job right…. But will history repeat itself? There are some shocks in store for them both as they try to triumph over evil.
I really enjoyed this story and thought it was a great start to the series and showed some good potential. Whilst Gargoyles seem to be becoming popular, I haven’t really read many stories with them in so that gives me a fresh and different read which is always welcome. I really liked the idea of the story, Gargoyles keep the veil between Earth and the Otherworld intact so that evil and its creatures can’t seep through. Whenever there is a break in the veil (a rift) it’s up to a special kind of Gargoyle to repair it and up to Sentinels to keep those ‘mothers’ safe from what comes through. Rose just happens to be one of those who can repair it but doesn’t know anything about it because of the circumstances of her upbringing and it’s through that, that she is led to believe she is the only one left. As soon as we meet Rose, we see that she is kick ass! She has a very streetwise way about her, a hardness that says she is a survivor and a free spirit that will bow to no-one – just the way I love my leading ladies to be. She has a great attitude also and shows very little vulnerability so when Cal comes along, she is a little swept away by the new feelings that he stirs. Cal is astounded to see Rose alive but he always remembered her and lived with the guilt of not saving her family so in the beginning we have to wonder if it is his sense of duty that makes him want to protect Rose… but at the chemistry between them heats up, it’s clear to see we have a love match going on. I was more than happy with this because they made a great pair and brought a sprinkle of romance to the story.
Obviously bad things will happen that will test them and showed us just how they all work together. We have enemies in the form of demons, witches, vampires, necromancers etc. and they all bring some sort of danger to our MCs. We see the rift happening and how they deal with it, see just how innate Rose’s power and instincts are. Cal also has a special gift that we see in action too which I thought was really intriguing and made me wonder just what the other Sentinels will be capable of doing. The whole idea of searching for her adoptive mothers’ soul stone is to keep Rose off everyone's radar but that sort of gets messed up quickly and gives the feeling that a countdown has begun with Rose now in the enemies sights. They have to battle for their lives numerous times bringing a lot of action to the story as Rose becomes reckless and Cal is burdened with guilt and opposing responsibilities forcing them to re-evaluate a lot of things. As we come to a shocking conclusion though, we will have learned a whole lot of secrets, truths and lies. The ending, even though tied up well and answering a lot of questions raised throughout has a small cliffhanger, nothing major but an awesome segway into the next book – which I will definitely be looking out for. 


{Review} Misery Loves Company (Miss Misery #3) by Tracey Martin

Misery Loves Company (Miss Misery Book 3) - Tracey Martin

Misery Loves Company is the third book in the Miss Misery series and I really enjoyed it.
At the end of book two we saw Jess walking away from the Gryphons after finding out how they had betrayed her & she’s sort of stuck on what to do next…
That is until her best friend’s cousin and famous writer has his soul sucked straight out of him at a book signing – right in front of Jess and Steph. Everyone is horrified, it is illegal for a Pred to do this and so publically too and when Steph tells her she is the only one she trusts to find out what happened….Jess is pulled into the Gryphons clutches again but it also means she can do a little delving of her own.
That’s not the only problems she is having lately; one involves a certain favour owed to the Goblin Dom who is about to call it in and the other is her relationship with Lucen and his need to have sex with his addicts, as you can imagine Jess is still not down with that and can’t see a way that she can live with it…. Will this mean the end of her relationship with the sexy satyr?
I really enjoyed this book, as I have the others. There are always multiple threads of story weaved together that come together in the end and this is no exception, so be prepared for more secrets, more death, plenty of action in and out of the bedroom plus Lucen & Devon… what more could you want? Jess is making progress with her pred status, she is accepting of some things but not others, I think she will always think like a human but be more sympathetic towards preds because she has a foot in both worlds and she is perfect to be some sort of liaison between the two which could prevent conflict. I like that she is still struggling with the pred/addict relationship because as a reader – I still do, yes I understand it but I don’t really like it because it goes against my nature I suppose and Jess is having similar thoughts. I’m into her relationship with Lucen but really wish she could be enough for him somehow. The involvement of Devon in this could be seen coming and yes, I like him but I’m a bit dubious about where it’s all headed romance wise.
The story has good progression, the preds seem to be on the precipice of war and are just waiting for a catalyst. We have more details of a prophecy involving Jess and we know how much I love those, it could be easily brushed off if it wasn’t coming from multiple sources and Jess begins to learn more about this here – it definitely had my curiosity going and I can’t wait to see it all unfold. It seems like all sides are looking for something because they know what’s around the corner for them, there’s an atmosphere of imminent conflict and it seems everyone is preparing by gathering information and allies so definitely precarious times for them all. As always with a good UF there is a mystery to be solved and that was another good thread to the plot, we got to know a few more people better through the investigation and a good few secrets are revealed so that when it all comes together – we get another thrilling read in this series and I’ll always be looking out for more from this author. 


Cursed by Fire (Blood & Magic #1) by Danielle Annett

Cursed by Fire (Blood & Magic #1) - Danielle Annett

Cursed by Fire is an awesome introduction to the Blood & Magic series…..

A few years ago there was the ‘Awakening’ in which supernatural beings came out of the closet, Humans are no longer the top of the food chain. Everything about the world has changed including who holds the power and how they are governed; Vampires and Shifters are rivals for that power and always seem to be teetering on the edge of war with Humans stuck right in the middle….. what the supernaturals don’t know is that the Humans are evolving too and some come with their own abilities that just might be able to help them fight back.
Aria Naveed is one such human, she uses her abilities to investigate crimes – a mercenary if you will. After a particularly bad case involving a child murder that weighs heavily on Aria, she is forced to reopen the case when some new information comes to light. With the reassignment comes a partner, none other than her friend and Shifter – James – and she finally feels they will be able to put this case to bed…… but what if it’s just the beginning? What if the childs death is part of a bigger issue? Can Aria find out before it becomes too late?
If that’s not enough, Aria has a stalker, a strange man that evokes something in her each time they collide, he can do things Aria has never seen….. but can she trust him? Why is he following her?..... all will be revealed
I thought Cursed by Fire was an awesome read and a great introduction to the series. Aria is a character that is very likable, she has lost everyone she cares about and only has a couple of people who she trusts and loves, she gives off a slightly lonely vibe but doesn’t let it get in the way of her work. I really liked her magical status (I don’t really want to spoil anything but the clue might be in the title) and how handy it is in dangerous situations but saying that, I thought she needed to master it more.
The story was great and what started out as one thing totally turned into something else but that isn’t unusual for a UF and one of the reasons I love this genre so much. We are introduced to a much different world; with supernaturals being outed, the power dynamic has shifted greatly and the supernaturals have more power than humans, when you have a scenario like this you know what’s going to happen….the underdog is going to rise up and cause hell. We get the stirrings of war and meet all involved but no clear ‘good guy’ just yet because we are just getting to know everyone. I always like the investigative scenario that Aria finds herself in and it unravels some pretty interesting stuff as well as jaw dropping discoveries that come from nowhere. There is a smidge of romance and love triangle but it’s only a smidge and doesn’t detract from the story. I would say that I preferred one to the other and maybe routing for him but the other is more intriguing and I’d be happy to see either develop into something.
I would say the book was very well written and had a Kate Daniels feel to it, which is so not a bad thing in my mind. With it being the first book, it is very much a getting to know you and the world you live in plot but it builds a very strong basis for the series to expand from and plenty of potential for where it could go. I can’t fault it in anyway and thoroughly enjoyed it and am looking forward to more.

{Review} Tainted Blood (Hell's Belle #2) by Karen Greco

Tainted Blood (Hell's Belle Book 2) - Karen Greco

Tainted Blood was just as good as book one – Hell’s Belle – and had excellent progression in both story and characters.
I love this genre and am rarely disappointed but this definitely has all of the elements that I like in an urban fantasy. Nina, the main character is easy to understand and connect with and I like that she is very capable at what she does. She is still having problems connecting with her witch half even if her Aunt Babe is tutoring her, she knows enough to get by but I’m wondering if the witch half is being cancelled out by the vampire half or is there more for Nina to learn about herself?
The storyline this time sees someone tampering with the vampire blood supply sending normally submissive vampires into ferals, attacking people and gorging on blood then coming to a most gruesome end and with more and more being infected…. How long until all vampires are tainted? That isn’t Nina’s only mission though and she finds herself cowtowing to the Mayor as he holds Frankies’ daywalker status over her head.
I really enjoyed the direction the story went and I liked the way the vamps were put in danger. The whole vampire population is threatened by it and even Nina and Frankie are susceptible so there is a huge burden on their shoulders which turns into a race against time. There is also the job for the mayor that Nina is forced to do and introduces us to her cousin and a former fling , I liked this part of the story but didn’t really feel that it was going anywhere until right at the end because there are a lot of threads that blend together to bring this story to a climax and another shock is in store for Nina – which I loved! The romance was minimal again and the connection she had with Max has sort of waned off but we get the feeling that more than one person is interested in Nina and I’m routing for one a lot! Usually, I like a lot of romance and sexytime in my books but I found I didn’t mind so much that is was minimal because the story more than kept my attention. The book as always is filled with action, misdirection, plots, naughty supernaturals, strange behaviour and some more secrets to be discovered by Nina which is perfectly paced so there’s never a dull moment and I can’t wait for more!


{Review} Dark Desire (Dark Series #2) by Lauren Dawes

Dark Desire - Lauren Dawes

Dark Desire is the second book in the Dark Series and just as good as book one.
Everyone is feeling the fallout from the climax of book one but none more so than Taer and Korvain who lost a brother – Adrian – and revenge is the order of the day. Taer is consumed with the need to kill the man responsible and will stop at nothing to avenge her brother, leading her to accept help from dubious places when Korvain refuses to train her in her weakened state.
Also feeling an overwhelming sorrow is Eir, the goddess of healing who cannot forgive herself for not saving her twin from Loki’s wrath. Unlike Taer, Eir goes about her life without revenge on her mind but struggles to survive the guilt …. That is until she meets someone who shows her there is more to life, that she needs to heal herself as she heals others and that one extraordinary human man can show her how to love again.
Loki is also regrouping, still more determined than ever to avenge his treatment from Odin, he starts to plot and scheme anew and what better way to start than with the help of a criminal overlord and his enforcers….. battles will be fought in different ways now but the stakes no less high.

So, I really enjoyed this second outing into the Dark Series and I found it a lot easier to slip back into this world of Norse mythology brought into current times. Whilst Bryn and Korvain are very present in this book, it was definitely Taer and Eir who took the leading roles throughout. Taer was broken in this, a complete turnaround from her character in book one and it’s understandable, you can definitely relate to her in this book as she is tormented in dreams about her brothers’ death, lives with the visible scars of that horrid event and no one wanting to help her achieve vengeance on his murderer because of her weakened state. I thought she really came into her own here and took chances and risks that she never would have before. I’m intrigued by the relationship that came about when she found a mysterious person to train her, he has all of my interest as much as Taer’s and I really hope we get more from them.
Eir is another character that is easy to empathise with, even though she and Taer are consumed with guilt, anger and grief, their processes couldn’t be more different. Taer grasps the anger and uses it to her advantage, being proactive in her quest for revenge but Eir is more solemn and deals with a lot of it internally. Eir is a caregiver so is unused to have to be on the receiving end of that, but what better way to mend her broken heart than finding love and a possible soul mate. This brings the romance to book two in much the same way as Bryn & Korvain did to book one. I felt the story needed this, the romance gave some tenderness into an otherwise sad instalment of the series and I just love to see the Valkyrie find love in unexpected places.
I felt the storyline wasn’t as dynamic as the previous book but that went hand in hand with the way book one ended so I wasn’t expecting all out action and big battles again because it made sense that everyone needed to regroup. I actually really enjoyed the different feel of this story, it was a lot more subdued and I think it balanced out really well. Taer’s thread brought the action, from her training and also from her dreams, they injected a certain fear into the book and I often wondered whether Taer was capable of what she had set her mind to. I really liked the new comer that entered her life, they have chemistry and a certain amount of sexual tension that may lead somewhere in future books. I liked her ending, I was shocked but satisfied and I was left wondering what was next for her and Korvain. I also liked the history that we got from the person who Taer was after, we got his story and therefore a greater understanding of where he came from and how he became who he was.
Eir’s thread brought tenderness and love to the story, giving a sweetness that was much needed amongst the grief and anger. I liked how she connected with her suitor and what they shared. I actually think he is a fab match for her and I enjoyed his story just as much as anyone elses. He was very protective of those he loved and there were times when my heart broke for both of them.
We still get to see what’s going on with the bad guys, as I said, we get Adrian’s killers story but we also catch up with Loki and see him putting more plans into action. He has the help from the criminal world and hired enforcers who also happen to be part of the dark elves – so very deadly and again he sets his sights on Bryn and co. I wouldn’t say his story was very prevalent in this but it is a great continuation from book one and you just know he is cooking up some scheme to put all our favourite characters in danger again! I can’t wait for more! 


{Review} Chase the Dark (Steel & Stone #1) by Annette Marie

Chase the Dark (Steel & Stone) (Volume 1) - Marie Annette Brown

I absolutely loved this book, in my opinion it was YA perfection!
The character of Piper drew me in straight away, as did the mysterious demon duo of Lyre & Ash as we join all three in a battle against time to prove their innocence, save Piper’s father and keep the coveted Sahar Stone out of the wrong hands.
The story got off to an action packed start and that action did not stop throughout the book giving me a thrill of a read. Piper is special, she is the only female to survive being born with two Haemon parents, the cost of this is that she has no magic. Piper more than compensates for this as she trains to become a member of the Consul and is well equipped to defend herself. That is until her whole life is turned upside down and she has to put her trust in an Incubus – Lyre – and a Draconian – Ash which begins not only an amazing story but also a very tentative love triangle. I know what you all think – urgh love triangles – I’m not a fan of them myself but it was nicely done here and no one is falling madly in love right now, it was the stirring of feelings between these young people thrust into life threatening situations. Lyre is the happy go lucky, fun character with his flirtatious banter that no one can resist but Piper so that leaves Ash who of course, is the bad boy, constantly brooding, sure of himself, alpha in the making but there’s just something about him that draws you in and makes you want to know more. I like both of these options for her, I’m leaning towards one but would be happy with either at this point.
Now, it’s not all about the romance….in fact that’s just a tiny smidgen of the content of this book but believe me the storyline is awesome! We have a magical world filled with lots of different magical people – Haemons (part daemon/part human) who possess magic, humans and Daemons that come in all shapes and forms. There is a sort of Heaven and Hell but they are known as the Overworld and Underworld that don’t necessarily equate to good and evil, there is a lot of enemies on all sides – daemons against daemons, humans against daemons, Haemons against daemons, and daemons against everyone else- so there is a lot of room for conflict but this story focuses on the Sahar Stone, Piper has it and everyone wants it – meaning that she is constantly running & fighting for her life and to protect the stone throughout the book. Multiple enemies are doing all they can to capture Piper leading her into perilous situations where she is forced to fight for her life without any magic (she doesn’t have any). It isn’t all cut and dried though because there are plenty of twists and turns to keep everyone on their toes, the book full of action and the story at a great pace – I could not put it down! It had everything I want to read in a UF – action, great characters, awesome world building, diverse species, secrets and lies, twists and turns and a smidge of romance…. Now I want more! 


{Review} The Reckoning by Emma Jones

The Reckoning was a good sequel to ‘The Awakening’ and carries on right where it left off…..
Lauren is new to the supernatural world after discovering that she is in fact a witch and her bloodline is from the very powerful Moonwick coven. That coven had dealings with Vampires and it didn’t end well, leading to a natural distrust between both witches and vampires. When her birthday present from Daniel sends her into a flashback from the past, Daniel is forced to save her life and creates a bond with Lauren – not so much fun for her boyfriend Gavin. This brings them to the attention of the council who govern all supernaturals when they turn to them in order to get rid of the bond.
Just when Lauren thinks her life is getting back to normal, she notices some news coverage about people being killed by a large animal but Lauren innately knows that this is no animal…. It’s a supernatural……and then the dreams start, dragging her further and further into the killers playground, taunting her, making her watch, giving her clues as to the identity of this person and it seems like the only person who can stop him is Lauren….. but at what cost?
I enjoyed this book and it was very easy to get back into the story and reconnect with the characters. I was glad Lauren was slightly more accepting of her heritage although I would have liked to have seen her embrace it more fully. I liked the complication of the bond which had Lauren in the middle of an emotional triangle with her boyfriend Gavin and his cousin Daniel, it wasn’t a typical love triangle, as I said – more emotional – but I was actually leaning towards Daniel in this, he seemed to be hiding some pretty strong feelings for her but I also liked that they both respected Gavin enough not to take it further.
I really liked the storyline, I always like a good old whodunuit and having a supernatural killer added a thrill to the story that gave some action and mystery. I really enjoy the dreams that Lauren gets and I loved how they were used here. I also liked the introduction of the council and its members, there seem to be a lot of stories amongst them that I would be interested in. With Lauren still not wanting to embrace her heritage fully, I wondered how she was considered to be so powerful and how she would be the one to overcome the killer…. I’ll leave that for you to find out but I wanted more from her, I wanted her to become all powerful and do things that other witches hadn’t for centuries but alas this was the last book about Lauren (I think) it certainly felt like it and I wasn’t happy with the ending because there was so much room and potential for more. Never the less, it was a really good read with a bittersweet ending, I wanted more but was satisfied with what I got. 


{Review} Soul Enslaved (Sons of Wrath #3) by Keri Lake

 Could Gavin get any more luscious? You’re about to find out!
In the last book Gavin had been royally screwed by a conniving woman and even his princely status couldn’t get him out of his sentence in Obsidius….. except maybe the succubus who enslaved Gavin in exchange for his brothers’ life.
Sabelle has had enough and she wants out of the pimp/succubus chains she is bound by but in order to do that, she is offered a job which could earn her the freedom she so desperately wants. The job is dangerous but she will do whatever it takes for her and her childrens freedom so she decides to call in a debt from the boss of the vengeance business and all round bad ass – Gavin – the fact that she enslaved him could just work out for her, after all who would make a better bodyguard? Sabelle is the only one with a claim on him that can’t be overlooked so his freedom is in her hands.
Upon release from one sentence to start another, Gavin’s Savidon is thrust upon him and his thoughts turn to lust – all aimed at Sabelle – but sex would only complicate things even more especially when someone Gavin would rather forget dig the claws in deeper with an unexpected twist. Gavin isn’t the only one with troubles though as we see Sabelle in a different light and watch as her world crumbles down around her and she wonders at what cost will she and her family  have to pay for freedom? As Gavin remains steadfast by her side, will the burgeoning love between them be enough to see them through the horrors they’re about to face and will Sabelle ever let her walls down enough to let Gavin in?

Needless to say – I loved this book!
I took an instant liking to Gavin when he appeared in book one and was desperate for him and Ayden to reconnect….but alas, Ayden was meant for another. Anyhoo, he definitely made an impact in more ways than one and I have been looking forward to his book ever since.
Book 2 ended on an uncertain path for Gavin, sentenced to Obsidius AND enslaved to a succubus? Things weren’t looking very good for the boss but that was until we got to know Sabelle more. By releasing Gavin to work off his debt, there is the thought that she will use him for her own ends….. she does but not in the way you would expect a succubus to as we find out that Sabelle isn’t the stereotypical succubus that everyone is aware of. Both she and Gavin had preconceptions of each other - neither positive – and during the course of the book, they are forced to challenge those and re evaluate what they ‘thought’ they knew. I didn’t think anyone would be worthy of Gavin but I was wrong, Sabelle is totally cool, she’s level headed, safe, all about family and so proactive in her quest to be free. She could very easily have succumbed to the temptations of the succubus lifestyle but she wanted better and not from any man. I loved the way she handled Gavin, he needed that kind of woman – one who wouldn’t bow down to him – and their chemistry was palpable. It was fun and sexy to see Gavin going through his Savidon around Sabelle, both trying to resist urges in different rooms – talk about sexual tension! The fact is that they do make an awesome couple, this will be cemented as the story goes on and we find out just how far they will go for each other and how much they steamed up my glasses ;)
The storyline was just as good as previous books, filled with action and danger coming from all directions, we get some new players introduced throughout and we meet some of the governing bodies of the world that make you wonder who the enemy really is. I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again - this author is not afraid to write violent and gruesome scenes, some had me cringing at a few points in the story but I also love how she can off set those graphic scenarios by injecting the hotness, sexytime and tenderness throughout. I enjoyed how we have drama on both sides – Sabelle has pimp problems, money problems, problems with secrets, family problems, parenting problems, succubus problems – she’s got 99 problems and I’m afraid Gavin is one lol Gavin of course brings his own set of problems and some of them are unbelievable and what we already knew is only scratching the surface. What they go through takes the reader on an emotional rollercoaster, believe me! and some moments really broke my heart in this – so be prepared for those feels. I also liked how we still get some of the brothers stories too and it makes me all the more excited for more books, Ferno & Zayne broke my heart also and it was hard to know who to feel for the most, so I can’t wait for those two books in what is an exciting, action packed series with a great premise, awesome characters and lots of sexytime that has tons more to give. 


{Review} Cougar's First Christmas (Cascade Shifters #1.5) by Jessie Donovan

Cougar’s First Christmas is a novella in the Cascade Shifters series and as the title suggests we have a cougar to swoon over. Sean Fisher is a cougar shifter who has chosen to make Christmas all about his girlfriend Lauren by proposing and making her his mate. Lauren Spencer is human and really shouldn’t be with a shifter, it’s illegal for starters but with people being attacked by the Human Purity movement – times are scary for those connected to the shifters.<br>They are both willing to take the risk and start by setting off to meet Lauren’s parents…..but on the way they are crashed into and forced off the road. When Lauren comes to, Sean is gone and the only thing Lauren can think to do is contact the one person she knows will help him – his alpha. With that phone call, Lauren is thrust into the shifter world where she must show her mettle and demand that Sean be rescued…. Will they ever be together again? Will Lauren be able to give him her secret Christmas present? Will the shifters even accept her? I really enjoyed this book and loved the Christmas theme, what could be more perfect than a Christmas proposal? I liked that Sean & Lauren’s relationship isn’t allowed but that they’re willing to take the risk for love, there’s something about a forbidden love that pulls at your heartstrings more because you know they could be dragged apart at any minute…. And of course that is what happens. We became aware of the shifter enemies in book one and it is carried over well here, we see just what they’re about in how far they will go to get their way. Everyone hates prejudice apart from those who inflict it but the lengths some will go to in the name of purity is horrid and really makes you feel just what the shifters are up against…. And that is just one of the enemies. It was nice to see a few familiar faces too as the shifters rally for Sean’s rescue and it was good to see how they reacted to Lauren. Even though there was plenty of drama and plenty of sexytime to steam up those pages…. there is an overwhelming sense of family, love, hope, acceptance and new beginnings. This was a great dip into the Cascade Shifters world and complimented book one perfectly – I look forward to more


{Review} Sacrificed to the Dragon: (Stonefire Dragons #1-4) by Jessie Donovan

Sacrificed to the Dragon (Stonefire Dragons) (Volume 1) - Jessie Donovan

The synopsis is for part one of the series but I am reviewing parts 1-4 as a whole because that is the story arc for these two characters before we move onto another couple. As the blurb tells us – Melanie Hall has offered herself up as a sacrifice to the Dragon Shifters. In return for a vial of dragon blood that will save her brother’s life, Melanie must live with the dragons for six months and in that time she must try to conceive a child to help the dragons maintain their numbers. Melanie will do anything for her brother so is determined to see it through and use the experience to her advantage by completing her thesis using the information she gains. Unfortunately for Mel, the dragonman assigned to be her mate hates humans and isn’t afraid to show Mel just how much she bothers him – making the partnership very tense indeed.
Tristan MacLeod is not happy that he is being forced to mate with the human but will allow it, to benefit the clan. He hates all humans because his Mother was killed in a horrific way that scarred him for life so he is totally unprepared for the woman he meets. His dragon wants her but he doesn’t and when he’s forced to kiss her…. His dragon takes over and starts a mating frenzy that will only stop when Tristan has sated Melanie thoroughly and she is with child….. but then he leaves, he’s done his duty and that’s the end…. but his dragon has other ideas and makes Tristan challenge his prejudices against humans.
Needless to say…..I loved this book! I read it all in one sitting because it was so easy to read and very moreish. It definitely ticked all of my boxes for what I love in a paranormal romance and seeing as I share the main characters full name and also live in Northern England – it’s like this book was written for me because if I had to pick a shifter to fall in love with me… would be a Dragon! I love the idea that women can sacrifice themselves to basically become a breeder for the dragons, Mel’s was a selfless sacrifice and that showed her character for what she was from the get go. She is definitely a woman who could be admired for her determination, the way she adapts to her circumstances, how she conducts herself and of course the reason she was there. I love when a couple start out hating each other, it’s the best kind of love when barriers need to be broken down and hearts rebuilt and that is exactly what we get here. Melanie challenges Tristan in a way he never has been before and it was great to see this little woman turn the big bad bossy alpha’s world upside down. I really enjoyed his inner turmoil with his dragon, trying to get him to not want Mel, keeping himself away from her – it was fun to read and added to the satisfaction when they do get together. It’s clear to see that Mel is changing him and he has most surely met his match.
The storyline was great, most of it was about the relationship and burgeoning love but when you take that away you have a woman who has given up everything for her brother’s life, someone who must adapt to new surroundings and a new way of life. She has studied dragons but of course, nothing can prepare you for actually being in their company and both sides have bad stories about each other. Melanie will learn not to believe everything that is thought to be known about dragons, she will find that there is more prejudice against dragons than she thought and they can crush a womans’ heart just as bad as any human male but she will also discover their sense of family and community, how they will protect their mates and their young with everything they have and that they’re not the animals history has told her they were so she plans to change both the humans and dragons perception of each other. Tristan will learn that not all humans are the same and some can do amazing things, that it is possible to love someone different and that they can make a difference elsewhere. We do get some action in the latter part of the book and it definitely the biggest challenge to Tristan and his beliefs but it is also a challenge to Melanie when the possibility of losing everything she has gained is thrust upon her and will either make or break their love. This is definitely a series to read, I can’t recommend it enough, perfect for fans of paranormal romance that need an easy read with lots of sexytime and a nice dose of hot alpha male. 


{Review} Reclaiming the Wolf (Cascade Shifters #1) by Jessie Donovan

Reclaiming the Wolf (Cascade Shifters Book 1) - Jessie Donovan, Hot Tree Editing

With Reclaiming the Wolf, Jessie Donovan is definitely becoming one to watch in the paranormal romance genre as she brings a great story with great characters every time and this is no different.
Kaya and Sylas have history, the thing about these two is that they are both from rival shifter clans - with Kaya being a wolf and Sylas being a cougar - they were in a relationship when they were younger and it turned sour. Fast forward 10 years and Kaya is now the Alpha of her pack, a very strong capable woman who has pulled her pack back from disorder & bankruptcy and earned the respect of everyone around her. When wolves with purple eyes start attacking cougars and one turns up dead on their doorstep, Sylas is thrust back into her life and not wanting to risk the tenuous relationships between packs – Kaya is forced to co-operate with the man who stole & broke her heart all of those years ago. I love a story where the lead male & female have known each other beforehand and especially when they have had a relationship and parted on bad terms because usually, it’s a misunderstanding or someone has come between them in a meddling sort of way. I love these because there is always sexual tension and unfinished business which carries across to the story and that is exactly what we get here. The chemistry between these two is HOT! You can tell they still have the connection that they shared all of those years ago and these two are not about to beat around the bush when it comes to getting what they want – that isn’t to say that they don’t need to hash out the past to clear the air, because they do – but they both aren’t stupid when it comes to realising what they are to each other and what they could be again, which led to a lot of sexytime.

With the arrival of the purple eyed wolves it becomes apparent that someone is infecting the wolves with something and letting them loose on cougar land which could end up in either a war between the two clans or her pack being wiped out to the virus, so it makes sense that a representative from each side do the investigating. This is a perfect excuse to team Kaya and Sylas up giving them plenty of opportunity to get to know each other again, learn how each other operates and hopefully that they can trust each other again. The investigation gives us an insight into how Kaya saved the pack but also shows us that not everyone is as honest as they should be and when the virus spreads, it becomes a race against time to find a cure and uncover the culprit. I enjoyed the plot in this and thought the virus brought something new to the usual shifter stories we get, I also liked that it showed what the shifters did to stay afloat and how they’re actually helping humans in a way. I liked the investigative feel of it and how they went about doing it, there’s a little twist part way through too that will have you hoping against hope that a cure will be forthcoming and we see just how far the couple have come relationship wise in such a short time.
To sum it up – this was a great book, great story, great characters, lots of sexytime and everything I love in a paranormal romance and I’ll be looking out for more in the series.


{Review} Santa's Little Helper by H.D. Gordon

Santa's Little Helper - H. D. Gordon

 Santa’s Little Helper is a fab read and something a little different for author H D Gordon. I don’t really want to say too much about the plot but I will have to try and not make it too spoilery.
The story revolves around 5 children – Manny, Michael, Emily, Benny & Tuck – all 4 or 5 yrs of age and from various families backgrounds which includes some issues such as domestic violence, single mother bringing up a child alone, a father that works away and a child whose parents think he has special needs. They make an interesting bunch of characters and I wasn’t the only one interested in them….. Out of the blue, each child receives a white box… and in that box is a red book that tells the story of the Elf that accompanies the book in the box. For some reason, when each child is given the gift…they all want to be as far away as possible from it but are each made to keep it in one way or another. Each child knows that this elf is not what it seems, its sinister smile broadens, it moves unaided when you’re asleep and there is a tangible sense of evil infecting each family….the children are scared as the elf terrorises each child…. And each child knows that the teeth hidden under the façade of a jolly face are used to eat more than candy canes… he eats children! And these 5 are his prey… will they make it to Christmas day?
So, I loved this book and it definitely had a Stephen King feel to it.  I was a bit dubious about reading a book with 5yr old characters as the main focus but one thing the author is good at, is her younger characters - they all have an old soul feel to them and it’s clear to see how they would come to the attention of such evil. Their voices, feelings, thoughts and actions came across very well and they did indeed make for a great read. I loved the storyline and it is different to anything this author has done in the past but shows how she can put her hand to any genre. I liked the way the children’s chapters came across and were interspersed with chapters from their parents, giving the viewpoint of the child who was living the drama and the parent who was watching their child succumb to a living nightmare. We also got some good views of their home life which in some cases, is just as messed up as the situation they’re in. It all builds a very detailed picture of the way the evil affects each household. The Elf was a great way to inject the horror/suspense into the story, Elves are meant to be happy, cheery and super psyched for Christmas – well, you can forget that here – this elf is a force to be reckoned with and knows just how to pull on these children’s fears and the adults too. The atmosphere of the book is palpable and steadily gets darker & more sinister as each part passes, this is not a fluffy Christmas tale, it has horror, fear, anxiety, suspense and death all focussed around a group of kids that will hopefully beat their demons. Great read! 


{Review} Shadow of Temptation (Asylums for Magical Threats #2.5) by Jessie Donovan

Shadow of Temptation (Asylums for Magical Threats) - Jessie Donovan

Shadow of Temptation is yet another great read in the Asylums for Magical Threats series.
We met the characters in book two but Jorge definitely made an impact with his aloofness and his ability to shadow shift. He was brought onto DEFEND’s radar when they discovered a new nemesis known as ‘the Collector’ for whom Jorge was forced to work for. He would never have been in the clutches of the Collector had it not been for Sabrina Ono, the woman he was developing feelings for but who ultimately betrayed him because of his secret latent ability….. and now, they’re about to meet again. When Jorge is given the mission to capture the leader of the Feiru terrorist group, he needs information and fast, this leads him to re encounter Sabrina and it’s not a happy encounter. However what Jorge doesn’t know is that Sabrina isn’t actually a part of the terrorists but she is actually an undercover operative and he’s about to land her in hot water by blowing her cover and it becomes a race against time to stop the next atrocity, capture the bad guy but most of all – stay alive!
I really enjoyed this story and I thought it complimented the series really well. As I said, Jorge had made an impact and I had hoped we would get his story and this is what we got. He is a very relatable character, in fact both of them are when you find out their circumstances – both are in places they don’t want to be and doing things they don’t want to do but it’s either that or pay the consequences and both want their freedom. I like when a couple has history and that it has ended on bad terms and what could be worse than Sabrina turning Jorge in for his abilities? But, she couldn’t foresee what would happen to him as a result. They both have issues to work through in this before they can trust each other again but you could still feel the chemistry between them and I was routing for them to find a way to be together. There were a few sexual tension moments that were hot, I love the will they, wont they feel to it and it makes it that much sweeter when the inevitable happens.
I thought the storyline was good and a great way to reconnect the pair. There is a run and chase ‘feel’ to it as they are stalked by the enemy when Sabrina’s cover is blown. Jorge wants to protect his source of information in the beginning but that soon changes and Sabrina knows that it’s become a life or death situation. What the terrorist group has planned is shocking and again, makes you want them to succeed in their mission. Neena also pops up and I have to say, I think her character is awesome and would love her story someday, I love the omniscient feel to her character and think she definitely has a plan and plenty of tricks up her sleeve. There is plenty of action in the book as they are chased and also action in the relationship department but it’s not all about the drama and the sexytimes, they both have some deep issues to deal with and it becomes imperative that they do so. This also brings them into the DEFEND fold and hopefully into the main series as reoccurring characters because I would love to see these two in action again.


{Review} First Contact by Kat Green

First Contact - Kat Green

I absolutely loved this book and devoured it in one sitting!
As the synopsis tells us – Sloane Osbourne became a paranormal real estate agent so that she could search for the ghost of her dead fiancé Michael. He had a thing where he would say put it off for a year and a day, so Sloane has a good feeling he will come through for her tonight, exactly a year and a day later and what better way to come through than a haunted house that has a potential buyer and Sloane is on the case. Once there she goes about her business with her paranormal detecting kit and waits….. then the banging starts…..then comes the cries for water…… then comes Michael and he tells her she needs to leave NOW!!! But does Sloane leave? No, she wants more time with Michael but what she uncovers could give her time with him…..permanently!
This book was just brill, I connected to Sloane straight away because she was grieving but being proactive about it by trying to hunt down Michael’s ghost. You can tell that she loved him a lot and that is what was driving her on her mission to make contact and the ‘year and a day’ rule was cute. In the beginning when she’s explaining how she came to be travelling to the potential haunted house, my suspicion was aroused straight away; I understand why she wanted to do it and that her focus on Michael was the driving force but alarm bells started  ringing straight away. When she makes contact on the first night and is given her warning she did exactly as I would have – delved right into it. The story that followed was an edge of the seat ride, very atmospheric and you could easily picture yourself as Sloane, sitting, waiting in the dark for contact, exploring the house with her detecting technology, finding a strange basement with a chair facing an unusually clean incinerator, hearing voices & banging and being scared beyond anything but knowing she needs to be right where she is if she hopes Michael will come through. She enlists the help of Michaels best friend who is not only sensitive to ghosts and has seen them but is also on the FBI payroll, he drops everything to get to Sloane because we all know something is not right which is furthermore proven when we meet the former owner of the house. As she starts to investigate we see that the house has a more sinister history than we thought but will its secrets be revealed? I also liked how as we go through the story that we get flashbacks to Sloane’s happy times with Michael which brought some insight into their relationship but also lightened up a very spooky story. You could be forgiven for thinking that this is going to be a typical love tragedy where one of the couple has died and needs to deal with unfinished business…….you would be wrong though. What this book is, is a whole lot more – filled with mystery, intrigue and suspense – and it would make an excellent movie. I urge you to give this book a read and be just as surprised as me by how great it is! 


{Review} The Seer's Lover (The Seven Archangels #1) by Kat de Falla

The Seer's Lover (The Seven Archangels Series) - Kat de Falla

The Seer’s Lover was a good read in all and I liked the concept of the book but it didn’t quite hit the spot for me.
The characters were likable enough and easy to understand, obviously Calise is the main character and I empathised with her plight as she is thrust into the world of Angels, Demons & Seers. Calise has always been able to sense when evil or good is around her and she thought it was just a sixth sense until she exposes herself to a Demon by recognising him, a good man protects her and forfeits his life but with his dying breath, tells her to go to Mal Pais and look for Carmen who will give her the answers she seeks. Once there she meets Lucas who is a true Seer, meaning his blood is undiluted and he can not only sense good & evil, he can see them in their true form and is equipped with extra abilities with which to fight them – continuing his ancestors’ legacy. Lucas has always kept this side of him secret because his kind are hunted to near extinction and he and his aunt Carmen have done okay up to now but things are about to change.
Lucas tries to stay away from Calise, he feels an intense connection to her and she to him but he doesn’t want to take it further when she will be put in danger by those who hunt him and he passes the ‘gift of sight’ to anyone he sleeps with – which has had disastrous results before – so you can understand his hesitance but fate seems to have other ideas as they grow ever closer. I liked the love connection between Calise and Lucas but it was very much instalove like because they hadn’t spent much time together or had instances to be with each other but they ‘loved’ each other, it seemed a bit forced to me and I wanted the love to blossom properly so I was disappointed by it and really didn’t feel the love.
Unbeknownst to Lucas, he has been brought to the attention of one of the most evil families around and they know what he protects, so they’re on their way to start a war between good & evil and bringing someone from Calise’s past along for the ride. What ensues is a battle where the odds are stacked against the good guys and just when they think it’s over…. It’s not!
I did enjoy the idea behind this book and when the action was going on, it was great! I liked the good versus evil scenario and how the demons came to be on earth, what they did, how they tempted humans to sin and that they hid their true selves behind a glamour, they really are quite sinister in what they will do and you get some prime examples in the story so you can see just how depraved they are. Obviously we get the balance with an angel or two but it’s Lucas that seems to take on the hero role which did endear him to me a lot more, he has a great heritage to learn about and look back on, it’s a rich history and ties in perfectly with the good versus evil vibe. I thought what he could do was fitting, especially when we find out what he protects. I liked the connection the bad guys had to Calise and to be honest, I would have been more impressed if she had connected to that person because it would have been more interesting and they already had a history but I still liked the presence because everyone ended up tied into this triangle of enemies. This being the first book in the series, it opens the world up in impressive fashion and as I said, I did like the concept, it started of great and I was really interested but then my interest started to wane and by 70% I was bored – I don’t know why, it was well written and the content was good but I just lost interest and forced myself to read the rest of the book. I would probably read the sequel but I’m not in a hurry to do so. 


{Review} Otherworld Nights (Otherworld Stories #3) by Kelley Armstrong

Otherworld Nights - Kelley Armstrong

 Otherworld Nights is a collection of short stories from Kelley Armstong’s Otherwold series. I’m a huge fan of this series anyway so there was no doubt I would love this book. It was great to be back with the characters from the series again, they feel like old friends and I have missed the series since it ended. I had read all but two of these stories as freebies on the authors website over the years and appreciated them the second time around too. The two new ones that I hadn’t read were Chivalrous – where we get one of the packs newer recruits – Reese’s – background story and it gave a great insight into his character & totally explains why he is so skittish about the pack and why he was unwilling to trust any of them. The other one is Vanishing Act which was written for this book and featuring Savannah & Adam. It was great to be back with these two characters and see a little more of them in action, the story was great with a lot of action and characters crammed into the short space of the story and you can actually feel the maturity of Savannah now in how she deals with everything from her life, her love, her attitude towards the investigation and also her future with Adam. I was pleased we got a little more of their relationship because this one only started in the end book and it didn’t have much time to mature as say …Elena & Clay or Paige & Lucas etc. it was still new and I feel we didn’t get enough of them. In this however they speak of long term plans, Adams worry about the age gap and holding her back and Savannah’s worries about where her life should be going and where she wants it to go – so a nice balance of plot drama and relationship drama. This is a must read for fans of the series, it was great to be back with them – I only wish we had more books to look forward to because this really does whet the appetite for more.