Sunday, January 30, 2011

Anna Windsor--Captive Spirit (Dark Crescent Sisterhood)

The night holds endless pleasures... and hides nameless terrors. — Bela Argos has suffered too many losses to count, and she's determined to keep her new fighting group safe. Manhattan is under siege by a new and deadly pride of demons, and she'll do whatever it takes to defeat the evil band of murderers and protect her new family--even kill the sexy, wounded police officer she's hiding in her basement.

Duncan Sharp never believed in the supernatural. A war veteran with many years of service in the NYPD, he prefers to solve his problems with badge, cuffs, and bullets. When he wakes to find himself hostage to a gorgeous bunch of women in leather--women who command earth, air, fire, and water--he doesn't know what to think, and when Bela's around, thinking is damned hard, anyway. Never mind the supernatural infection threatening to end his life and turn him into a creature he can't begin to imagine.

**** (4 stars)
This is the next trilogy in the Dark Crescent Sisterhood and it's been a long wait. This book was a slow start for me, there is some back story being told and a lot of work to pull the new fighting "quad" together. At times it was boring for me, but each member of the new group is interesting and unique, even Duncan and John. The Legion is gone, but not all of the Legion followers are gone, and now they are trying to create a whole new enemy. Once the fighting started with the new enemy, a group of tiger-shifting demons, the story took off. I look forward to the next two books.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Annette McCleave--Surrender to Darkness (Soul Gatherer series)

As an immortal, Jamie Murdoch has spent lifetimes battling demons. But he's cursed with an inner berserker, and his expertise as a Soul Gatherer is overshadowed by uncontrollable rage. Sent to Japan to investigate a mystical weapon that can destroy demons, Jamie feels out of place in a society that values tranquillity and self-control.

Kiyoko Ashida has dedicated her life to fighting evil. Now she's dying, and her remaining days are linked to a mysterious artifact, which is the only thing keeping her alive. Still, her path is clear--until the day a valiant Soul Gatherer storms into her life and, with one fateful touch, steals her heart.

The Veil is both destroyer and healer, and Jamie knows Kiyoko cannot survive without it. But when the malicious ambitions of a fallen angel target the artifact, he's torn between fulfilling his duty and saving the life of the woman he loves.

*** (3 stars)
3rd in the series, and my least favorite so far. It's a nice story, but not a page-turning thriller. This book was easy to put down, but it kept my interest just barely enough to finish it. This series is interesting in the fact that it is very different than most paranormal romance. It centers, loosely, around religion and demons. The religious aspect is not heavy, or off-putting. And it's just different enough to get your attention. Murdoch and Kiyoko are not a very passionate couple. Their love affair is played out in mental dialogue and dreams. And the Japanese angle gets a little annoying. But the plot of the overall series moves ahead a little, and was very anti-climatic for me. Not to say I won't keep reading this series, it just won't be my first pick off the shelf.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

P.C. Cast-Awakened (House of Night #8)

Zoey has returned, mostly whole, from the Otherworld to her rightful place as High Priestess at the House of Night. Her friends are just glad to have her back, but after losing her human consort, Heath, will Zoey -- or her relationship with her super-hot Warrior, Stark -- ever be the same? Stevie Rae is drawn even closer to Rephaim, the Raven Mocker with whom she shares a mysterious and powerful Imprint, but he is a dangerous secret that isolates her from her school, her red fledglings, and even her best friends. When the dark threat of Neferet -- who is coming closer and closer to achieving her twisted goal of immortality -- and Kalona returns, what will it take to keep the House of Night from being lost forever, and what will one desperate girl do to keep her heart from being irreparably broken?

**** (4 stars)
Not my favorite of the series, but still a good one. Zoey and her circle face another battle with Neferet while facing loss and hardship. This book takes a very hard road in the series, and you may not like all the events that happen, but they are (I'm sure) crucial to the series as a whole. Choices are made, sides are aligned, and Neferet can not turn back from her path now. Zoey and Stark are a strong team now, and all your questions about Stevie Rae and Rephaim are answered. As always, P.C. Cast leaves us circling the mailbox impatiently waiting for the next book. I can't wait to see what happens next.....

Friday, January 7, 2011

J.K. Beck--When Wicked Craves (Shadow Keepers)

Their love could bring the most potent pleasure—or the darkest nightmare. — A danger to both the human and shadow communities, Petra Lang is cursed never to love. For one touch of her skin unleashes the vilest demons imaginable. Sentenced to death by the shadow authorities, who fear she’ll turn her curse against them, Petra is rescued at the last instant by vampire advocate Nicholas Montegue. As their bodies merge and transform into mist, Petra feels an urgent erotic longing.

Nicholas fought long and hard to save Petra—and nearly paid the ultimate price. He risked his own life to spare hers, yet he knows he can never give in to the explosive attraction he feels for her. But the deep yearning they share can only be deferred for so long. Together, they must find a way to lift the curse. For only a love this strong has the power to overcome such monstrous evil.

**** (4 stars)
Excellent book, not the extreme page turner as the first two. But still a great story. Nicholas has been an intriguing character through the first two books, now he gets his own story. Petra is an unknown, there is no one else like her. And like her curse, she is isolated from the world. She helped Nicholas and his friends in the second book, and now must help them correct the choice she had to make to free them. Their story is passionate in almost a simple "first love" kind of way, but a great mystery and one i really enjoyed, can't wait for the 4th book.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

J.K. Beck--When Pleasure Rules (Shadow Keepers)

Seven innocents have been brutally murdered on the streets of Los Angeles, yet the Shadow Alliance has no suspects and no leads. And as more bodies are discovered, the age-old feud between the vampires and werewolves threatens to explode and turn the city into a living nightmare.

With her back to the wall, Lissa Monroe—a strong-willed, ravishingly beautiful succubus who entices men to surrender their souls—agrees to go undercover for the Alliance. Her mission: infiltrate the mind of werewolf leader Vincent Rand, a ferociously alluring enemy who has a powerful hold over her. Lissa has never lost control of her deepest desires, but Rand is an impenetrable paradox, a principled soldier who fears nothing—except perhaps the darkness of his own past. As the city of Angels teeters on the brink of apocalypse, these two adversaries must join together to have even the slimmest chance of surviving a more lethal enemy hidden in plain sight.

***** (5 stars)
Another Hit! This is the second in the series and is just as strong as the first. Sometimes a 400+ page book has some slow and tedious parts. But not this series, each page is packed full of action, suspense, and passion. The characters from the first book all return to help solve the crime against humans. But we meet a few new ones including the main couple. Theirs is an interesting match, each with their own baggage and pasts. I really enjoy the character development in this series, each character has their own path and personality, and I have become attached to some of them. Add to that, the fact that Beck creates a real "who done it" mystery to tie it all together, makes it even more enjoyable. Read the first before starting this one, or you might be a little confused as to some of the plot.