(Ch. 60) Struggling to keep on listening, in truth only thing that Thor deserves is a stab in the heart and making sure he NEVER EVER sees his Welsie again. He is SO disgusting I don't know how I'll bear another 4 hours of him. Lucky there are other POVs.. :/
This one is by far the WORST of the bunch and I really can't think of one romance novel I've read that all I hoped for was the MC to die in agonizing pain
Truly unworthy of finishing but I'll do it, somehow.. I'll do it.. :S
This Saturday I actually did nothing special except for reading this book. It's been a while since I allowed myself to shut myself off the world and just relax this way. I swear I can do that probably most of the days of the week hehe
I really enjoyed reading this one. This series is good!! Different than the Lords of the Underworld and yet we get to meet some of the warriors and their women. The setting and the feel of the world itself is in a way the same yet the fact that a lot happens in the heavens and depends on higher beings makes the feel of the series different somehow.
I should also mention that even though I thought this series will be suitable to younger crowds (from the 2 previous novels) I hope those youngsters grew up a bit from the last two since this one has mature content ;)
We got to meet Thane in the first book in the series. He's Zacharel's second in command. Thane doesn't get close to the people around him, he is loyal to Zacharel, mainly because he respects him but he is close only to his two best friends - Xerxes and Bjorn. Each of them went through horrors when the three of them were captured by demons. Back then they were strangers but emerging together from captivity they became a family, brothers.
The previous book ended with Thane enthralled (against his will) to a Phoenix and Bjorn disappearing into thin air in the middle of a battle against demons. We start this book with Thane in the Phoenix camp enslaved AGAIN, this time, by Kendra who uses him as a sex slave.. He is poisoned by her in a way he isn't aware of his identity, he sees himself as her slave and is very attached (=addicted) to her.
Elin is also a captive in the camp. She is half Phoenix but has no Phoenix powers. She is basically a slave. She lost her entire family to the Phoenix's clan and she wants to run away but she is too frightened to even try, then she sees Thane and comes to the realization that together they can rescue themselves. All she has to do is make his head clear again so he'll remember who he is..
Thane and Elin escape the camp into the heavens where he keeps her in his club working as a waitress. He wants her close by so he can guard her from the rage of the Phoenix clan but he has another reason, he just can't get away from her. Something about her just draws him and he doesn't understand the appeal he finds in her. She is nothing like the lovers he is used to, meaning the ones he enjoys inflicting pain upon then letting them torment him back the same way - but only for one night, then it's over and he moves on. Never to sleep with them again. He doesn't know how to make love to a woman, how to be gentle and sweet, gentle Elin isn't hard core to be interested in what he's into and he's not sure one time will be enough or that he will be willing to give her up never to see her again after sleeping with her.
Elin is a contradiction in a way, maybe it's the fact that she is half Phoenix half Human. Her Phoenix side makes her feisty! She speaks her mind, she is brave in her way and yet on the sight of blood or aggression she crumbles to the ground, that probably thanks to her Human side and the traumas of her life. She quickly befriends the other waitresses of the club even though they are very different from her, maybe more like she wish she could be. Strong, brave. She also have a "secret crush" on Thane but as the other waitresses tells her - everyone has.. but they also tell her why she should give it up...
Though they are both drawn to one another they keep being apart. Elin doesn't want him to know she is half Phoenix so she is afraid to get too close so he'll find out and kill her or send her back to their offenders - the Phoenix clan. After what he went through with Kendra he won't be able to forgive her Phoenix mother even if she has no Phoenix traits, especially not ones that can enslave him as Kendra did.. Thane tries to keep himself apart as well, mostly because he is confused with how he feels towards her, how different she is to him then every other woman is.
Their romance progressed quite slowly and I enjoyed their barter. I liked less how they kept leaving each other without saying a word instead of trying to explain themselves but I guess for the both of them trust isn't an easy thing.
Besides their love story we continue with the search for the demons who killed Germanus (and a bit of Bjorn and his disappearance). Most of the plot is of the main characters which IS a good thing but in a way it means that all the action was brushed and rushed to the end of the book. I didn't mind that much since I loved the both of them, loved the interaction between the three best friends and all the characters around them (oh Axel.. can't wait to get HIS book!). We didn't meet more warriors which was fine by me. Too many only confuses me :D
I think one of the things that made Thane and Elin's love story so enjoyable is that both of them are so "human". I mean the both of them have their secrets, both of them went through hell and back and not used to putting all the cards on the table or even believe they deserve being with someone they love so much. They keep apart from one another because they are used to being this way even though in their hearts they DO want to be together. The both of them find it hard to believe in the other, accept the good intentions for what they are. Thane is really a sweetheart when you get to know him, I totally and absolutely fell for him (yeah, with every other female.. I know, I know.. :P) and Elin was also really sweet in her way but I loved that she has a spirit inside of her that she needs to know how to "use" or "be". She uses her mouth mostly to show her feisty-ness because she doesn't know any other way and she isn't brave enough to do more, but that changes. I loved her in the end showing her worth, showing how strong she became.
Can't wait for the next one!!! I have a feeling it would be of Bjorn, kinda makes sense with all we learnt about his disappearances and the why of them. Too bad I have to wait a WHOLE year :( I WILL get another "shot" of Gena in November with Torin's book (The Darkest Touch - Lord of the Underworld #11) but that also seems far far away....
By Gena Showalter
This is the third installment of the Angels of Dark series, a spin off to the Lords of the Underworld series. I started reading this series about two weeks ago, maybe less and LOVED it! It has a different vibe than LotU but it's the same world and same amazing writer so it can't be a miss :)
If I Were You (Inside Out, #1)
Rebecca's Lost Journals, Volume 1: The Seduction (Inside Out, #1.1)
Rebecca's Lost Journals, Volume 2: The Contract (Inside Out, #1.2)
Rebecca's Lost Journals, Volume 3: His Submissive (Inside Out, #1.3)
Rebecca's Lost Journals, Volume 4: My Master (Inside Out, #1.4)
Being Me (Inside Out, #2)
The Master Undone (Inside Out, #2.5)
Revealing Us (Inside Out, #3)
His Secrets (Inside Out, #3.1)
By Lisa Renee Jones
As a few other writers I'm loving lately, I found Lisa through a bundle for the holiday, what was it? "Heating up the Holidays" and then I read another novella by her called "Unwrapping Holly" so now I'm trying this series which I've a read has a lot of followers.
By Christina Lee
This is the third installment of Between Breaths series. It started with one stand alone book called "All of Us" which I absolutely loved! then came the second part "Before you Break". So first I got Bennettized, then I fell in love with Quinn and now I can't wait to read the next one and anything Christina will publish. I'm sure it will be AMAZING!
By Kit Rocha
This came highly recommended from my friend Eleanor (The Book Hammock). I postponed it forever since I'm not sure it would be my "thing" but she keeps asking me when I'll be reading it so I found a little time here in May to squeeze them in.
So basically this month is mainly two series plus two separate books. I will be VERY optimistic if I were to also add "The King" By J.R. Ward.. I don't think it's possible to "squeeze" here another 500+ pages hehe but well, since I'll be finished re-listening to the series I would LOVE to get to read this one ASAP! But as it seems that means in the beginning of June.
Well, here we are at the beginning of May, frankly with all that was going on with me the previous month, I can't believe it's over and the huge project I've been consumed by is soon to be done. Not yet, but soon enough. I worked a lot more hours and had less time to be be at home with my dogs, less time to read naturally, less time to be me and do staff I enjoy or just relax. Hope this month will bring more "light weight" staff for me.
So I didn't really have time to read (at least not in the beginning of the month when I was tired all the time and couldn't keep my eyes open to read when I got home) but actually most of what I read in the beginning of the month have also been a disappointment so why read when I obviously need the sleeping hours and the books aren't worth the sluggish morning after half a night of reading ;)
I'm still re-listening to all the Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward. While last month I listened to 5 books, this month I only managed three. I'm almost at the end, I have about a third of the 10th one and then I only have the 11th till I get to read "The King". But I did manage to read the Insider's guide which I had but didn't read before.
I got to read a small mini series (all the novellas together amount to about 300 pages) that wasn't planned in my April Goals which was "Curio Vignettes" By Cara McKenna (aka Meg Maguire). Highly recommend it! :)
Without further ado here is my April Recap :)
I've read Lords of the Underworld a few months ago. It's one of quite few Paranormal Romance I've read which ISN'T about vampires. It's about demons, warriors and immortals. But nevertheless a great read! Gena built an amazing world that feels real (or could be real), interesting characters and now a spin off which started with Zacharel (whom we met in the LotU series) and continues with the rest of the Amy of Disgrace. I loved Zacharel when reading of him and the LotU series and LOVED his personal story. I also really enjoyed the second one in the series of Koldo (a new character). Gena brings into this world interesting and divine motives I really like. I like that the characters are versatile and even though supposed to be utterly good (angels hello!) they are damaged in their way leaving them having to struggle with their past but also present (so they'll actually have a future ..). I planned on reading the last one when it was published (on the 29th of April) but since I was all over Curio I postponed it to the beginning of May (will start reading it today :)).
Favorite Book of the Month: The Country Mouse Collection By
(Country Mouse + City Mouse) By Amy Lane & Aleksandr Voinov
I started with putting this one in the "fun break" but then moved it to this spot since even though it WAS a total easy going and funny read it was also a great story and my ABSOLUTE favorite of the month. We have two short novellas that together brings us a whole story (I think together they are about 200 pages). The first one deals with the forming of the relationship between the Country Mouse - Owen the easy going from the US coming to a visit in London and the City Mouse - Malcolm the uptight workaholic living in London. The first part had a lot of sex (some of it naughty :P) but it did have a sweet story as well. Owen is an amazing influence on Malcolm and he can read him like an open book, giving him what he needs even if he doesn't know that's what he actually needs! The second one is about them trying to get along as a couple when they have different views towards a lot of things. Mostly about work.. Owen wants a work with meaning, Malcolm wants a job with a status and naturally pays well. Both of them wants that for the other which is what's sweet about it. I wish we could have had another short novella to this one but I guess I'll have to settle with what we got :)
I should mention that the read was very fluent even though it's written by two authors. This is the first read for my of Amy Lane but Aleksandr Voinov I knew from a preious read - "Unhinge the Universe" (Also Highly recommended!)
Disappointment of the Month: Find Yon in the Dark by A. Meredith Walters
I don't like writing bad reviews but sometimes I feel like "I have to" first because I want to document what I read for myself and second because I would like to have an honest review when I look for a book to read so for me it also means to deliver it myself with my reviews. One other thing, I really try to finish a book even if I don't really like it or have my misgiving about it but this one, I left after almost 50% for me that means the book have REALLY disappointed me (or angered me which will mostly be the case). I think this book had a lot of potential dealing with a rough subject - a teenager suffering from both Mood (Affective) Disorder and a Personality Disorder. I guess it was suppose to show us how the MC struggle with the disorders both with one another and with the world around them (family, friends, kids they go to school with etc) but it was a total miss because the girl - Maggie was A CHILD. I think she behaved like a 12 years old.. (not 16...) there is NO love expressed only an obsession we all read about / witnessed / once had when we were young when it was all about the crush and nothing to do with the person towards it's expressed. Also it's all about forgetting who she is to be HIS girl. I felt that the Maggie couldn't deal with what was going on with her boyfriend since she can't even understand what a real relationship is about. I really wish I'd love it. I do.
I find these kinds of subjects close to heart since I studied Behavioral Science for my B.A. and I worked with different kinds of Disorders for years (granted not with what Clay has, not that it matters..). So yeah, it was a total miss on that account but the most strange thing about this book was that even though it brings such a refreshing and different story all the other details of the book felt like a total and absolute cliche / unoriginal. So as I wrote above, haven't finished this one and cancelled my planned reading for the rest of the series..
Discovery of the Month: Curio Vignettes by Cara McKenna
(See links to all reviews above)
I read almost all books published by Meg Maguire (and will finish them all till the end of the year) but this is the first I've read in her other pen name - Cara McKenna. She writes Contemporary Romance under Meg and Erotica under Cara. I don't read a lot of Erotica basically because I'm more into the story than the sex.. ;) But this one gave both the sex AND the story. I loved that we had a story of about 5 months long which means we could feel how the relationship was building (each novella had a short few weeks gap from the previous one) making it more realistic. I loved that we had a man whore (and not the obvious other way around) I loved that what Didier was dealing with wasn't so obvious or I should say stereotypical to prostitutes it had more to do with HOW he lived his life and not about his occupation specifically. I loved that I could relate to both of them even though my life story has NOTHING to do with theirs. For me that's something a great writer can do (and a good one does occasionally or not at all). Both of them felt real to me, relateable. I also appreciate an author who can write a good novella. That's not an easy thing! But I should say that all of them had their happy ending but it wasn't an absolute and total closure to the story it was mostly having something to look forward to. I would have been totally OK with reading just the first one but naturally was happy to get all 6 of them.
Fun Break of the Month: One Hot Night (Old Port Nights #1) by Samantha Hunter
This is a short novella that's going to become a series though I'm not sure if it'll be like Curio containing short novellas or a "regular" series with full novels. Anyhow it was a fun read, and was exactly what I needed after all the "misses" I had this month (I mentioned above one I didn't finish but there were two others). I really enjoy reading Samantha, every novella I stumble upon (OK, except for one) is a great an fun read. I really want to get to read her full novels but as you know the "to read" list is always unrealistic.. I won't write another review of the novella here you can click on the name and go to my full review.
That's it for this month recap! May Goals coming up in a bit!
This is the last installment in the "Curio Vignettes" (mini) series and for me it delivered exactly what I wanted to read :) I love a happy ending, love happily ever after but I usually prefer it to be less sticky and more to the point of dealing with the problems or at least seeing a way out of them - just as this installment delivered.
Caroly and Didier leave Paris for a few days vocation in Provence. This trip is very significant for the both of them, first because it means Didier found another job (I loved the job that he found, I actually thought it would be cool if that's what he did and then I got exactly that :)) and it also means that he is dealing much better with his Agoraphobia. and naturally it means that the both of them can take the relationship to the next level.
I think it's beautiful how much the both of them changed in the past 5 months they have been together. Caroly is a much stronger woman who knows what she wants, the sexual experiences did a lot for her confidence and not only between the sheets and Didier naturally had a lot of change with his phobia but also he did a huge change in life choosing to live for himself and deal with the fear and not close himself up with his clients which on the one hand are fun for him and on the other hand they helped him confine himself in his apartment.
While I wrote after the first installment that I get Caroly's state of mind, I think that in a way I also understand Didier. I love being in my house. If I didn't have my dogs and a day job that takes me out of the house I would have probably almost never leave it, just to go to the post office to take my packages and sometimes go out to eat when I don't feel like making dinner. I can be very sociable. But at heart I crave the silence and solitude of my 4 walls. For me it's not about fear or insecurity it's just that I'm a private person (and unlike Didier I'm not the hospitable type) and like my quite time with myself.
I guess a lot of avid readers know what I mean :) Anyhow I know what Didier means when he says that Caroly truly loves him because she makes him get out of his shell, and my good friends are like that as well, when I "disappear" for a while they rouse me from my social hibernation. I know it's bad being isolated but I'm too content with being alone to change that and lets say the truth out loud here - it's not good being alone all the time.. and it's good having a balance.
You already know I love this mini series and I already started adding tiny bits of books by Cara. I'm really happy I'm ending this month and starting a new one after reading two great series (remember the disappointments from the beginning of the month?). Tomorrow I'll be returning to the Angels of the Dark series by Gena Showalter YAY!
At long last!!! A confession! That's not a real spoiler considering the built up of the previous installments and the name of the novella. So here we are in the one before last novella in the Curio Vignettes (mini) series and as usual I'm really happy to finish another sweet part!
This one was mostly their love confession to one another and them dreaming together of their future together, as a real couple. I'm not much for sticky love but I felt their confession of love was simply beautiful, real and charming in it's imperfection.
After hearing Didier in the previous installment we are listening again to Caroly's POV. I must say that in a way I prefer reading his POV, there is something a bit, well, shallow (as she confess herself) and insecure in the fact he really in fact wants to be solely with her.
But her insecurities have no place in the real world since Didier loves her dearly and can't wait to find another occupation so she can be his true companion in life. He also can't wait to have her all to himself, living with her and not just seeing her on the weekends. Caroly naturally shares his wants but she also fears that it won't be easy to accomplish.
This installment finishes in a very happy note (as the previous ones did as well) and a promise to Caroly for a special kind of treat when he finds other means of income.
It might be getting late, but I can't see myself going off to sleep without finishing the last one in the (mini) series!
I'm giving this one 5 stars but I actually would have given it more if that was possible :) I SO loved this one! We go back to listening to Didier's POV which is very different than we heard before and a little similar to the voice of Caroly in the first installment where she is so insecure, wanting yet afraid to reach and caress. Didier is the same, only his insecurities aren't in bed, but outside his bed and outside his flat.
We got to listen to Didier's inner fears, inner torture, how much he wants Caroly and how much he wants to give her or rather wishes he could. He has such a tender heart. his love for Caroly and the respect he has for her is simply beautiful and the way Caroly doesn't give up on him, she knows him, can read his body when he is stressed, calms him when he is in this state but also doesn't leave him like all the people around him - locked in a cage he himself built. You have to truly love someone to do what she is willing to do for him - helping him deal with this crippling fear of outdoors.
And then there's the sex.. WOW. That was truly amazing. It was so much more than just sex or kinky / naughty sex, it had a lot of meaning for the both of them. For once he had to surrender to her. Yeah, he surrendered to women before but that was part of the act, he didn't REALLY surrender and he was playing, he wasn't himself. With Caroly he truly gives up his control and let her take him. The experience was special for the both of them and brought a new intimacy that was more about the two of them and their love for each other and what they are willing to do / be for one another than it was about the act itself.
Simply Beautiful. I find myself utterly in love with Didier. I think it's impossible not to. He is perfect, yet he is human, has his flaws, has his difficulties. I can totally relate to Caroly. I see what she finds in him, why she is willing to keep him even for a short while (not knowing if what they have can really work on the long run) and how much he deserves "saving". So many women come to him to take comfort, to be pampered, but when does he get to be taken care of? Never before Caroly.
Rushing up for the next installment! :)
Here we are in the third installment, returning to Caroly's POV. I really enjoyed this one, we started with Caroly and Didier having dinner together outside his apartment. I loved listening to Caroly's inner voice, explaining how she is the one who really knows Didier, the only one seeing him this vulnerable with hands shaking and a haunted face, and she is the one who experience these things with him without looking at him with pity or disrespect. She loves him for who he really is not just the beautiful guy or the one who really knows how to make a girl happy. From his perspective it's quite obvious that he truly trusts her and want to sort of "impress" her and "be normal" for her, so he can really be with her like "regular" couples are (naturally it's funny writing that when he is not "faithful" to her).
Returning home we get back to "tutoring" when Caroly looks inside the "treasure box" where Dider keeps his toys. It was an extremely sexy and naughty read! Unlike the sexual "session" they had in the previous part where they played two people they're not, I enjoyed much better reading their own experience, who they are, where they can go with their curiosity and sexual attraction.
It's so much fun reading these small novellas. Each bringing us a different view - either Caroly or Didier, and getting to see how their relationship develops in those small glimpses each a few weeks / months apart making the built of the relationship feel more realistic.
I just remembered this morning I got a recommendation to another short series by Cara - Shivaree. It has three parts, each quite short (80-140 pages). I'm not sure when I'll have time to read it, but I'll keep it for those times where I finish my planned reading for the month (like I did with this series).
After listening to Caroly's inner voice, in the next installment of "Curio Vignettes" we get to hear Didier - The way he perceives his world and the way he perceives her.
Didier is just a man. A beautiful man, a man who knows how to satisfy women, but also a man who cannot leave his own flat due to Agoraphobia. In the first installment, he goes outside to the museum Caroly works to resume their relationship and make it a friendship kind of relationship and not a costumer paying for a whore..
They keep this relationship in which Caroly is faithful to him while he keeps his clients. She doesn't speak of any further expectations she has from him and she seems content with the relationship they do have, but all HE thinks about while being with her is the dream of being ONLY with her and of confessing his love for her.
The "tutoring" resumes a little when they play a game in which she is behaving like one of his clients. It was interesting listening to his thoughts, to see how he regards what he does, how he sees Caroly in the act itself and when the acting is over and they are left Didier and Caroly - so familiar with each other.
I liked it a little less then the first installment but, well, it's about 50 pages so there is little to be told and not a lot that happens but I am interested in the next part, we were left with a sort of promise from Didier which I can't wait to read! :)
This one was a total joy to read!!! I loved it!
It's a steamy hot erotica novella and when I say steamy hot I mean - WOW steamy hot! But believe it or not, in about 100 pages you get the fore-play and the sex and actually a story. Well, it's not a lot but what does happen between the two of them and how they connected was an interesting read and the ending left me with such a huge smile!
I would have been pleased just to leave it at that but YAY for me! There's 5 more smallish novellas to this mini-series.
The whole novella is from Caroly's POV. She is almost 30 years old American living for the past 3 years in Paris and oh, she's a virgin. Finding this fact to be a nuisance somehow preventing her from being "normal" or a "woman" so to speak she turns to Didier a man whore who comes with good recommendations ;) All she has to do is come, relax, get rid of her virginity with probably one of THE most beautiful and sexy man alive. Really, one can't ask for more.. Thinking of how it went for her, I do think we each need a Didier of our own ;)
I, myself considered myself a "late bloomer" (well, not THAT late ;)) so I guess I got her and her thinking on the matter. I did think, like her, that it was just the "right time to be a woman", more a mental readiness than having it connected with someone she was seeing. I guess for a lot of people it kinda comes naturally from the development of a relationship, as they say "one thing led to another" but as it seems for Caroly it was something internal she wanted for herself and not something she wished to have with someone specific. Caroly have her own reasons to being a virgin or for not dating much. I got her reasoning and I loved how Didier, seeing it from his perspective, explained the "logic" he found in her behavior.
Didier is a man whore. Yeah, but he is "just a guy" (besides being great looking and knowing how to please a woman). I guess his clients mainly saw him as a means to an end.. But Caroly is really interested in him, maybe the fact that she is an American living in Paris made her approach to him different than the "regular" Parisians he is used to. He does "accuse" her somewhere of being American in her perspective of relationships. I guess different cultures see things differently. It's only natural. So I guess that's the reason Caroly sees Didier differently and really tries so connect with him, or maybe it's just more natural for her to get to know him before feeling ready to sleep with him.
It's hard to really know Didier's perspective for most of the novella since we only get Caroly's POV. So we can't know what he means or what he doesn't both in his behavior as in what he chooses to share with her.. and well, we are dependent on Caroly's perspective of all of it.
The story is a very fluent read. It has a little bitty bit of a "darker side", since we learn a little of Caroly and Didier's past and what brought them to the place they are in today. I thought it added the depth needed for the story to feel more real. It's not a "dark secret" being revealed or something like that, it's more about the both of them getting to know each other and with that some parts that aren't "painted in pink".
This is the first Novel(la) I've read by Cara McKenna but I also read most of her novels written by her other pan name - Meg Maguire (in which she writes Contemporary Romance). As I've said countless times I started with reading "Strangers on a Train" containing 5 short novellas by 5 different authors and ever since then I've been trying to read more (until i got to all ;)) of the novels published by all five. Meg is a favorite for sure! I've read almost all she published by this name (I have three more planned to be read the following months) and after reading and enjoying this one she wrote as Cara I'll be adding little by little the novels she published in this name.
Just finished Chapter 22.
I must say I applaud any and every bad feeling Thor have had the past year since Welsie has died.
He deserve every second of it!
To say it mildly he is a total and absolute self absorbed ASSHOLE.
I should say this is the 2nd time he has been outrageously cruel to No'one.
1st - I half forgiven (though not really..)
the 2nd? Peeling the skin off his body wouldn't nearly be enough!
Well, well, well, I'm nearing the end here! Can't believe it! This is the book of Payne and Manny aka Dr. Manuel Manello or as Payne calls him about half of the book "healer" :) I really liked that she called him that, so old fashioned and respectful.
Payne FINALLY get to return to real world and leave the sanctuary behind, too bad it's only because she broken her back and needs medical attention that might not even help her, leaving her a prisoner in her own body. From the start, Payne tells V that if the operation doesn't succeed she wants him to kill her (great for V getting to know he has a sister then realizing he might have to kill her in less than a week...). Jane doesn't think she can handle this kind of operation that's why they contact Dr. Manuel Manello her boss but also a good friend from her "living days".
Manny is struck by Payne from the second they meet. They have an amazing "click" between them and the both of them doesn't want their time to end after she recovers enough from the surgery to return to the brotherhood compound. But there's nothing she can do, she has to leave him behind..
After being scrubbed Manny can't really go back to his life, he has been scrubbed too many times (he was also scrubbed when V came to the OR and Jane left with him) he feels like he is losing it. Payne is in also not in a great shape since as it seems the operation didn't work as well as she wished meaning she doesn't want to live. On a last chance kinda deal V goes to Manny to bring him back to Payne in the hopes that love will change her mind and it does but in a really interesting way (that's the place to say that V is a total douche bag towards Manny AND Payne right up until almost the end but that's the regular problem with V - it's always about him.. he has always been a self observed bastard..)
I loved that we have a strong woman who isn't afraid of what she wants and I love that her man - Manny - loves her as she is - the sort of Alpha Female. But that doesn't mean that Manny is a "pussy", no! he is a strong guy who needs a strong woman by his side (boy oh boy would I love to meet a guy like that in person.. I'm no Payne or Xhex but I'm sure as hell an "Alpha Bitch" which means most men can't handle me.. and I'm mostly bored with them..)
It's cool that even though both siblings got a special power from their mother, the powers are somehow different, in my eyes, they fit the personality of each. That being said, I must say that after reading this book (again) I don't understand what the Scribe Virgin's problem with Payne. She loves to fight, yeah, but she isn't feral. She is very respectful, she has morals, she is not a bad person or a cruel one, she has a soft compassionate side which we saw even in the previous book with No'one and Layla. She is just not a "womanly woman". it's really stupid locking her up because she knows how to wield a sword.. There is so much more to her than her fighting skills, if she was inducted into the brotherhood 200 years ago she would have probably flourished. She would have been able to be a part of a family, people who care about her, can train her but also teach her about living, she could have interacted with females of the warriors and I'm sure if it would have been thus she would have found a mate (probably a warrior as well...). She is surly what they consider a female of worth.
There is a sweet side story of Manny's new hobby - horse racing. While I'm not into this particular sport I love horses! so it was fun for me reading about them and seeing the relationship between Glory (the horse) and Manny and how it resolves.
There is an interesting connection between two characters (both having a POV in this book and that's all I'm going to say! :)) something that makes a lot of sense and kind of brings all the guys together.
I'm giving this one 4.5 stars because I felt the subplots took too much paper from the main characters.
There are A LOT of V and Jane, which is obvious when speaking of a book of his sister but I felt that V's difficulties took too damn space. For me his book (Lover Unbound #6) and story was completed. Like all brothers he has things he has to deal with, alone and with his female but I didn't think we had to go there with him in a book which isn't even about him.. but you know me, meaning you should take in mind I dislike V... it's always ALL about him, he is the most important guy, the smartest, and the ***est of them all (too bad annoyest isn't a word..) I felt bad for Butch having to deal with V's problems. It was too much Z and Phury all over again.
Another side story I don't understand the need for was Detective José de la Cruz and his new partner Thomas DelVecchio (aka Veck). They are investigating a human serial killer. and? what was the purpose of this subplot really? The books are quite long as it is, so adding a subplot which has no meaning what-so-ever is really unclear.. As I understand the Warden wants to do something with Butch and de la Cruz in the future so she probably didn't want us to forget who he was and still.. there was no reason to give it so many pages..
Well, at least he had no Lessers as a POV that's a good improvement!
What we did have as the "bad guys" - the "Band of Bastards" (from here on - BOB), they are what was left of the Bloodletter's warriors from back in the old country. I know that they have a lot of fans but they are just stupid brutes.. Well, except for Throe being the pathetic guy their leader Xcor keeps laughing at. I did like the way the Bloodletter's death was resolved though. But I do think that Xcor is WAY over his head if he thinks he can throw Wrath from his chair! He is too stupid to do what he plans to do. It's exactly like in A Song of Ice & Fire - You can be a great warrior and an amazing leader everyone follows into battle aka Robert Baratheon but when put on the Iron Throne he isn't the great King everyone would have thought he'd be.
Quinn keeps being tormented in this book. He tries to sort of "find himself". He strikes a friendship kinda deal with Layla is really good for him (though he mostly think it's "for her benefit") because now that Blay is involved with Saxton he has someone outside of their circle he can confine with.
Only thing left to refer to is the narrator. You know I really disliked him in the first books, but actually in the last 3 books he was really great! I wish he would have different voices to characters, especially F/M but except for that, he's really doing a good job.
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I'm only writing the name of the book, the characters and a link to my review if one is available. I'm still thinking of how to organize it all together..
*** #09 Lover Unleashed - Payne & Dr. Manuel Manello (Manny) ***
#10 Lover Reborn - Thorment & No'One/Autumn
#11 Lover at Last - Quinn & Blaylock
#12 The King - Wrath & Beth
This insider's guide was published after the 6th book in the series - Lover Unbound (V's story) and contains a short novella I read and reviewed separately - "Father Mine".
Took me long enough to get to this Insider's guide, I had it even before I started re-reading the series I just didn't find the right time to get into it. Thing is, if you read the books a long time ago then some of the things you've forgotten so I'm quite happy I decided to wait to read it after a re-read of the series.
This Insider's guide have a lot of fun and games, interviews of the Warden (As she is often called) with the brother, a summary of what she has to say about the writing of each book, her experience as a writer, funny quotes from the books, few deleted scenes and "slices of life" (Which are small entries she posted in message boards relating to day-to-day with the brothers).
It's was really great reading all that. I actually spend the whole day reading it and right now I kinda feel I have a BDB overload hehe
The reason I'm giving this one 4 stars though is you have to be a HUGE fan to love it. If you're into the books just read the novella separately. I love the BDB world and the brothers, I do, but I think that if you're not obsessive with the series you won't enjoy it as much. For me it was more a book about the Warden than a book about the brothers. I skipped some parts I didn't find that interesting, a lot of the background to the interviews (I'm not into reading the setting of an imaginary interview between author and their characters), and I did skip some things containing Phury and Cormia (I'm not interested in their story or their characters).
It was interesting to read the way the Warden writes and how she envisions the brothers in her head and writes what she sees and don't describe her writing as something that she does but something she records. But at the same time, after reading most of it I feel like I'm more into the finished work itself and less about how we got there. So I enjoyed reading this one but didn't fall of my feet. I think I would have preferred more about the brothers themselves, history or things we didn't know and staff like that and less about the writing itself but that's me, I'm sure there are a lot of people who were really into the how and the unique interviews that gives the realistic feel to the brothers.
My recommendation - if you're a huge fan - don't you dare miss it out! But if you're into the books and not obsessed with them just don't miss "Father Mine".
So here is the review of the second book in the series. I've really enjoyed reading this one (and the previous one), I think this series is going to be great! As I wrote in the first one, it's more innocent sex-wise, I mean, in this book and the previous both main characters are virgins and the sex comes in quite "late" in the game and it's not explicit. So I think it can be suitable to a bigger span of readers.
That being said, The book does deal with rough situations I nearly cried just reading the Prologue! (and did infact shed a few tears later on) Koldo's story is heartbreaking, and it's clear that as much as Nicola needs him, HE needs HER even more. He is tormented by his past, what both his parents did to him. His mother was an angel but his father, well, I won't spoiler, I'll just say his kind are considered the "good guys" in any sense of the way.. In the previous book we've learnt that the woman who cut off his wings was in fact his own mother which no matter what we find out about her, I hated her with a vengeance, his father is no better but you know what, in a way he IS better, when someone is wicked that's who he is (especially in these kinds of books when you can categories good vs. evil quite easily by species), but her? I don't buy her "excuses" for being THAT cruel.
So in this book he has his mother, Cornelia, captured (he took her and Jamila from hell after Annabelle killed Unforgiveness) but he doesn't really know what to do with her. He wants to torment her, make her go through what he went through, make her suffer. His difficulty in harming her doesn't really have to do with the fact that he WILL get punished for it, but more of what it does to him to be that cruel. Yeah, he did horrible things when he was growing up with his father but he does want to put that piece of himself in the past, especially as he gets to know Nicola and be a better person for her and with her. I'm not sure I'm pleased with how the situation with her concluded in this book. Maybe we'll get more in the next books so I'll be more satisfied..
Koldo meets Nicola in the hospital where he goes with his new partner Axel to get rid of a demon tormenting a human patient. While being in the hospital Axel is the one seeing the demons following a young woman. Intrigued they follow her and find she has a twin sister on death bed. They both have a heart condition but her sister - Laila - condition deteriorated and there is nothing the doctors can do. What both Axel and Koldo know though is that it's not really the heart condition as an organ as the heart's condition as the soul. Laila has a demon inside her that torments her and makes her lose faith in life, in getting better, achieving anything. As the demon's influence grows, her body weakens until the toxins made by the demon inside her and also by his fellow f(r)iends who keeps following her AND Nicola gets the better of Liala and puts her in the bed she is now with a few days at the most to live.
Koldo, seeing Nicola decide that since he can't really help her sister in the situation she is in, he at least wants to teach her how to get rid of the demons inside and around her. He appears to her and makes a deal with her, she will do his bidding (pursuing joy) and he will buy a little more time for her sister. She accepts and here goes the romance :) What I liked about this one was the fact that unlike other books in the genre were the hero hides what he is, or avoids the subject, Koldo pretty much tells her what he is and what to expect. He tells the truth no matter what (an angel.. after all..) and he doesn't allow HER to lie as well (not even jokingly). The only "for" Nicola has on her sister and on "regular" people that she, as a child, used to see the demons so it's more easy for her (I guess) to believe in what he is saying.
I really loved their love story. Both Nicola and Koldo are so innocent in a way, both never had this kind of relationship before and both of them need each other so much. Nicola has no one BUT her sister, she hasn't had for a while now and her sister is mostly someone she takes care of now, she isn't someone she can really confined with (anymore) and well, she knows that her sister isn't going to be here in a short while leaving her truly alone in the world. Koldo hasn't had anyone all his life. All he had was vengeance against both his parents that should be coming to an end now. He actually never had someone who feels deeply for him, who wants to take care of him and be there for him, someone that can listen to him and observe his heartaches. NIcola is perfect for him in this sense. She has a purity to her love, for her sister, for him. She is exactly what someone like him needs and she does it naturally. She cares for him because this is who she is, and add love to the mix you get a prefect match for a guy (yeah, well, and angel) like Koldo who was never loved by anyone.
More than get Nicola, Koldo also get a true friend in Axel, the angel Zacharel partners him with. He's a really funny guy and there is something in his past that connects to one of the characters in Lords of the Underworld (that guy also has an appearance in this book), can't wait to hear the whole story! Wonder where we'll get to read about it, in this series or the other one.. Well, anyway he sounds like a jerk in the beginning but he is really a good guy, Hope we'll get his book soon!
We got to see Jamila again but since we don't get her POV we don't really get to know her better. There are also two brothers Malcolm and Magnus that we get a small glimpse of and there are more angels mentioned in the Army of Disgrace that we didn't hear of before but I liked that it was only a small glimpse to know "they're there" and not more than that to get us all confused with too many characters.. They might be the Army of Disgrace each one of them with his sad story, and yet when it gets to protecting each other and being there for one another they do it and expect nothing in return. Yeah, they say they get a "favor" but you get the feeling that they say that to cover their "macho" side not because they really expect compensation.
We have a little of Thane's POV with a short side story about him and a phoenix and a little bit more than that but that's the basic of it. Probable to get us into his story since he's the main character in the next book - which will be released next week on the 29th of April - YAY!!
Another small and stupid thing I had to write! I have an obsession with the color blue. It started a few years ago when I had to choose a name for my first Blue Great Dane. I had to choose a name in the letter U (as the breeder asked me) and found Ultramarine which is the color of the Lapis Lazuli stone. From there on I started being interested in all the names and shades of blue and the color in general. I always say that if something is blue it's a good thing and I tend to grab objects in that color whenever possible no matter what we are talking about. My Kindle's cover is naturally blue as well, looking around my house I see blue IKEA bags around, a blue dustpan, blue towels, blanket, sheets, and well the couch is actually blue as well, also Eric's bed is half blue but that's luck .. getting one THAT big isn't a picnic.. ;) So yeah, I'm obsessed and these are just the items I see "laying around".. So this book brought me another blue word I didn't know about - Cerulean. I find that I really like this word. I have to think how I can use it :)
I think that's it actually :) I'm loving this series and can't wait for the next one! I'll have to have a short break for now and will be reading the Insider's guide to the Black Dagger Brotherhood while waiting for the next one to be out. I'm glad that with all the disappointments in the beginning of the month I'm closing the month with a smile and a new great series!
I found about this series kinda by mistake. I don't really remember how it happened I just remember I was looking at Gena's website and looking for the next books in the series and on which character they are going to be and then I found it! I just finished "The Darkest Secret" (Amun and Haidee's book) and I just fell in love with Zacharel. Yeah, he's a guy that grows on you, not the one you fell for the second he lands in a room wings spread but well, what can I say, I guess a smoldering hot angel who behaves badly and therefore walks around with snow falling on top of his wings seems to be specifically my type! I'm really not to blame!
I should say that if you haven't read the "Lords of the Underworld" series it really doesn't matter. The warriors appear in two scenes in the book and if you don't know who they are you'll still get it (there's a small explanation that I think covers the important).
So as I've said, Zacharel isn't really the goody goody angel, the Deity is quite displeased with him, but he it doesn't want to give him up (=making him fall=dooming him to hell), he wants to somehow help him and make him realize his wrongs. His way of doing it? Making him in charge of a bunch of angels that are basically like him, on the verge of falling. Being responsible for them means that if they do wrongs Zacharel is punished FOR them and he has one year to show the Deity that he and his small army can change otherwise they would ALL fall.
We get to know a few of the warriors who fight with Zacharel. Lucky for us, even though there are 20 angels we only get to really read about 4 of them which was really OK. I mean, a lot of these series introduce you to 10 new characters in the first chapter, each a special feature and ability and you just get lost with all the details of the different characters not to mention the world itself! But this one (and I do think that the fact I've read LotU has nothing to do with it!) was a pure pleasure to read. From the first chapter I was just hooked and couldn't put it down!
We start of by meeting Annabelle a human who has been wrongly put in a mental institute for presumably killing her parents. What actually happened is a demon killed them and conveniently left, leaving her holding a bloodied knife (she was trying to use against him). Unfortunately for Annabelle the demon did more than that, he somehow linked them together and from that day forth she started seeing demons (which regular humans don't if the demons don't wish to appear to them). Seeing demons doesn't sound that bad right? the bad part is they try to harm her and she has to battle them, while in the mental institute where she seems even more disturbed and violent.. and not only because of that she is treated badly..
Zacharel learning of a mental institute being infiltrated by demons looks for the reason they are drown there finds Annabelle. At first he isn't really impressed by her, after all, she is a human, what can she offer him, and why would he even be interested in her suffering.. (I told you, he has to grow on you.. ;)) but something is wrong, for some reason he can't just leave her there and go. So he decides to take her away. But that won't mean the demons will stop going after her!
So now Zacharel and Annabelle are "stuck" together. At first, Annabelle have a hard time dealing with the arrogant annoying angel who tries busing her around by pretty soon Zacharel discovers that even if Annabelle is a mere human, she is a lot more than that. She is a strong woman who dealt with a lot in life, she won't be confined again by him or anyone else, she will fight her offenders and even if she welcomes his help she has a strong spirit and mind that keeps Zacharel on his toes :) I love me a strong independent woman!
I loved how their love story progressed. How much Zacharel changes and how little by little Annabelle learnt she could trust Zacharel (he IS an angel, but surly NOT a saint!)
I have a feeling this will be a new favorite series :) and it's a good thing it's a short one! well, it is short now! the second book "Beauty Awakened" was published last year and the third "Burning Dawn" will be published next week. I'm already intrigued about the other angels and really want to read the ones we were introduced to. The next one is Koldo and after him we have Thane. He and his two best friends are really interesting characters, tormented as Hell! or should I say was actually tormented IN Hell!
I like the concept that they need to be saved, that they deserve to be saved, they are angels, there are suppose to be pure and good and all that, but what happens if they get fucked up? what if their life is a living hell - literally. and you know there is nothing like a tormented hero ;)
Something I feel I should mention though I'm not sure why, I think the sex scenes are less detailed and pronounced than in the LotU. So I guess this series would also be proper for younger crowds as well. I didn't mind that, I don't have to have scolding hot sex scenes. I was fine with the way it was. But to each his own, right?
So yeah, I loved it and recommend it! :)
Off to read the next one!
We're here! John Matthew and Xhex's book! I think for most BDB fans this is absolutely one of the favorites, favorite book and absolutely favorite character. But for me, you know, he can only be third best after Z and Rehv.
The previous book ended with Lash capturing Xhex and it starts with JM being obsessed with finding her though in his heart he doesn't believe she is still alive and even if she is, it's obvious to him that they can't / won't be a mated couple. Xhex IS alive, captured in a special invisible "holding cell" by Lash. Lash, the fucked up guy that he is naturally falls in love with her (with tormenting her and torturing her as well), reminds us a little bit of David (Mr O) from Bella and Z's book only 10 times worse for Xhex than it was with Bella.
When Xhex is finally out of Lash's grasp she is determined to find him and kill him, as JM is. She - for all he did to her, He - because a bonded male can't stand aside the torturer of his female but also for all the shit that he put him through in the previous books. They form a "bond" that consists of basically that - taking down Lash and then they walk away. That's all Xhex can offer JM and he sort of gets it. That's all he can handle from her, there is too much that keeps them apart, mostly too much of personal things they don't think they could share or the other person can understand. Their love story is heart breaking. In so many points throughout the book you feel like crying tears of sorrow or tears of anguish at how it just doesn't seem to work out no matter that the both of them are obviously and SO in love with each other. I loved how it concluded, loved how little by little it started to work out even if it didn't at that moment. They both needed the time for their feelings and resolve to mature enough for them to put themselves on the line. I loved seeing a more vulnerable side to Xhex when it comes to JM and also how he is willing to do everything for her, even let her go if that is what she wishes.
The only thing I was missing in this book is Rehv. I wish we'd have something more from him considering how important she is to him though he does tell JM one sentence that continues on a loop in his brain and have a real significant to who she is and where she is at after all she has been through which is A LOT (btw, Z has his "pearl" as well, loved that he said it and loved that JM took it to heart). We get to hear a little bit of what she has been through, mostly what she deals with now after all that happened but I wish we could have had more of her past and how and where she become the female she is now. She had a past lover named Mhurder which is mentioned but not enough that we get the whole picture, we get the summary mostly. Mhurder used to be a brother so I kinda hope we'll have his story in the next books. Knowing the next one's up until the King and recently Ward said that the 13th one will be of the Shadows so I think that he's the "one missing". I would really love to hear his side of the story on Xhex but also what happened after they departed.
There are several side plots - we have Lash's POV which is naturally disgusting and annoying, I really don't like Ward's villains (up until this book anyway..). There is something absolute about their evilness that makes them unbelievable or not interesting to hear/read. Also the way the Omega is behaving in this book, especially towards Lash is, well, strange. He waited for so long to find Lash and then? :/
Beside that we have a little bit of Thor and how he is starting to get back to himself and how things are starting to get better between him and JM. There is also a hint of someone from his past (prepare yourself for his book, not the next one but the one after it!)
Naturally since this is JM's book we get Quinn and Blay's POV which is mostly their love conflict. For Blay it's obvious, but for Quinn being with Blay is everything he could ask for mixed up with everything he doesn't want for himself. Their love story is heart breaking. Quinn hurts Blay so much, yet he is the one that has to deal on his own with his own demons concerning himself and his love for Blay that he can't possibly fulfill for too many reasons. I can't wait to re-read/listen to their book (the 11th one).
We also get a nice and quite important side story of Darius and Thor (when he just came into the Brotherhood). I loved getting more about D. I remember I really liked the little I've read about him in the first book and also the things that other characters remember of him. It was also interesting seeing younger Thor and his relationship with Darius. It's sort of closing a circle now that Thor is taking care of the "younger Darius"/JM as opposed to Darius taking care of Thor when he was younger.
Wrath keeps visiting Payne on the other side and we get a bit more of her besides her sparing with the king. She is an interesting and quite tortured character even if her cell doesn't sound THAT horrible. There are too sides to her, a very nice and vulnerable side we see when she speaks to other chosen and the crazy fighter she is with Wrath. From what the Scribe Virgin describe of her (little that she does) I wouldn't have expected to see the "nicer" side but it's there and that's what makes her interesting. I loved Xhex and the fighter that she is but also that she isn't only that and having another female like her in this book but also in the next one (and in the series in general) is a really good thing and also a change to the "milder" females the other brother have. Though I think that every female has her own personal "gift" for the brotherhood when she comes to live with the brothers.
Last one is a really strange and frankly not interesting story of two humans - Gregg and Holly checking out the house of Eliahu Rathboone which is said to be haunted by his ghost. After finishing the book you get why we got this side story but I wish it would have been more relevant to the series and not so "off". I didn't like Gregg, didn't like Holly, their love story was not only irrelevant but also boring. Lucky for us their chapters are quite short..
I loved this book. Except for Lash and the humans - the main story and the side stories were really interesting and moving - emotionally but also more literally they moved the plot together being wrapped around the story of Darius/JM and Xhex but also the strange connection it all has to Thor (that we didn't have a clue about before this one).
For me, these two books - Rehv and JM's is getting back on the saddle after V and Phury's book. mostly Phury's... I don't remember my impressions of Payne's book but I loved Thor and the boy's (Qlay ;)) books. Also I can't wait to get to The King! this one went so quickly I can actually see myself reading The King in two weeks or so (and not somewhere in June..)
One last thing! I promise! Jim, the narrator, is really getting better. I would love that he'd make a difference between M/F but except for that he is getting better on every aspect. Actually the previous one was a lot better too.
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I'm only writing the name of the book, the characters and a link to my review if one is available. I'm still thinking of how to organize it all together..
*** #08 Lover Mine - John Matthew & Xhexania (Xhex) ***
#09 Lover Unleashed - Payne & Dr. Manuel Manello (Manny)
#10 Lover Reborn - Thorment & No'One/Autumn
#11 Lover at Last - Quinn & Blaylock
#12 The King - Wrath & Beth