Category Archives: Reviews

PICKS & PUCKS by Teegan Loy

PICKS & PUCKS by Teegan Loy

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
PICKS & PUCKS by Teegan LoyPicks & Pucks by Teegan Loy
Published by Dreamspinner Press Genres: Contemporary, MM
Reviewed by Lisa

No one would disagree that Justin Corrin has a gift with a hockey puck.  Justin also has incredible talent with a figure skating pick. His life should have been a dream.  Far from it.  His older hockey player brother is jealous and his father, a college hockey coach, has a fit when he learns that Justin is taking figure skating classes.  Adding to that his hockey player boyfriend insists on staying firmly in the closet.  His mother’s death in a car accident is the final blow in destroying Justin’s home life.  She was the glue that kept them together.  After the funeral he left his fractured family for training in California.

 

Just missing the podium at Nationals Justin agrees to come home with his demons to face the mess he left behind.  Confronting family members it seems that they are trying to make amends while Justin is the one who won’t let the past go.

 

New skating programs, developing family relations, and a new hockey boyfriend who’s not in the closet.  Justin is learning that he makes his own drama and his own demons.  It’s up to him to make a life worth cherishing.

 

Such sorrow and angst in the beginning.  The evolution of the main character’s growth in Picks and Pucks is gritty, realistic, and heartwarming.  Accepting Justin’s invisible demons may take a moment of adjustment, but they have a place in the skater’s maturity so bear with them.  The secondary characters are just as real and intrinsic to the plotline.  Picks and Pucks is the story of a family that’s unraveled by anger and death, however time and love is knitting them back together.   Cheer them on.  I Joyfully recommend Picks and Pucks. Tissue optional.

THE PROTECTOR by Cooper West

THE PROTECTOR by Cooper West

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
THE PROTECTOR by Cooper WestThe Protector by Cooper West
Published by Dreamspinner Press Genres: MM, Paranormal
Reviewed by Lisa

JoyfullyRecommendedFrom earliest recorded history there have been Guardsmen – a Handler and a Protector – one human and the other a weredog shifter.  They are bondmates for life and when one dies the other follows almost immediately.  At no time in their history has one out lived the other.  Until the day Handler Theo Taylor was gunned down and his Protector Alex Taylor survived.

 

Three years and Alex continues.  He lives and breathes.  He exists and little more.  And because Alex is still alive he’s expected to take regular checkup trips to the Institute where young Guardsmen are taught and trained for their future.

 

During one of Alex’s customary visits to the Institute he catches a scent that shouldn’t be possible, his bondmate.  The Protector zeroes in on a man he’s never met before, twenty-six year old unbonded Handler, Marcus Stephanek.  He too is an anomaly, a Handler long past the age of finding his counterpart.  Alex doesn’t want another bondmate, he wants Theo back.  As for Marcus, thrilled at finally meeting his Protector, his heart is literally crushed when Alex denies him.  Wounded souls barely coping with what fate hands them and there’s more to come.

 

An alternate reality that asks an emotional investment, The Protector is the perfect escape.  The groundwork begins slowly, builds layer upon layer as the pace quickens and the drama unfolds.  Characters from Alex and Marcus to the secondary cast come alive on the page for readers to identify with.  This other world in The Protectors leaves no emotional stone unturned.  I Joyfully recommend The Protectors.  As soon as you finish, you will want to start again.  Alex and Marcus and The Protectors won’t let go.

FERAL HEAT by Jennifer Ashley

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
FERAL HEAT by Jennifer AshleyFeral Heat by Jennifer Ashley
Series: Shifters Unbound #5.5
Published by Penguin on 2014-03-18
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 98
Reviewed by Jo

From the author of Lone Wolf comes a paranormal romance about two lovers torn between ecstasy and savagery... Jace Warden is sent to the Shiftertown in Austin to find a way to free all Shifters from their Collars. But pulling off the Collars can cause Shifters to go mad or kill them outright. In Austin, Jace meets Deni Rowe, a wolf Shifter with troubles of her own—she was deliberately run down in the road, and while her body has healed, she still has episodes of total memory loss during which she retreats into her pure animal self. Jace has never met anyone like Deni. Courageous and beautiful, she volunteers to help him test the Collar removal. And as Deni and Jace work together, they feel the mate bond begin. But can Jace help Deni believe she can heal enough to be anyone’s true mate? This sixteen chapter novella includes a preview of the upcoming Shifters Unbound novel Wild Wolf.

Jace Warden has come to the Austin Shiftertown in secret to be the guinea pig for the work being done to get the collars off of the shifters.  It has become evident that the shifters must get them off as soon as possible and just wear decoys.  Jace has barely gotten off his bike when he is attacked by a wolf.  What surprises him is that right after that a female wolf attacks his attacker.  Jace isn’t sure what is going on, but he immediately goes to the aid of the female wolf.

 

Deni Rowe might not have been happy at having to take a collar and move into the Shiftertown but because she had cubs, she was willing to do so.  However after an accident that gave her a concussion among other things, Deni has been unable to control her fight or flight impulses and it takes nothing for her to go into battle these days.  When Deni sees a stranger being attacked by a loser she knows, she immediately goes after the attacker and gets her bell clocked again.  But this time, Jace helps her get control and get out of the situation.

 

Jace instantly felt attraction to Deni but he isn’t ready to have more than a fling right now.  Deni also isn’t quite ready to look too deep into the sparks she feels when she is with Jace, but she is instantly protective of him and is willing to go on the outs even with her family to keep him safe.  No one is going to mess with either Jace or Deni with the other one around.  Attraction becomes flames and then passion, followed quickly by love.  The odds are against them from the start because they are part of different shiftertowns and getting permission to move is very difficult.  Both Jace and Deni are willing to separate and follow the rules for now, but when danger follows Jace, only Deni can help save him if she can get her emotions and instincts to work correctly fast enough.  Can Deni and Jace beat the odds and find the answer to getting the collars off once and for all before they lose everything?

 

A love that should never have been found blossoms and flares to life while shifters look for the answer to save themselves from Fae technology that could end them once and for all.  Deni and Jace find more than one answer they were looking for in Feral Heat.  The struggle that both Jace and Deni have gone through separately told me right off that they would be a power couple if given the chance.  I loved how both were instantly protective of the other from the minute they laid eyes on each other, even before the passion came to call.  With the highly explosive background of secretly getting rid of the collars and keeping the work secret, I enjoyed seeing how Deni and Jace worked in tandem to achieve their goals and to also find a way to grab the gold ring in the end and have the best of everything.  Feral Heat has suspense, passion and humor that make it a wonderful way to spend a few hours escaping into the shifter world once again.

RIVER ROAD by Jayne Ann Krentz

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
RIVER ROAD by Jayne Ann KrentzRiver Road by Jayne Ann Krentz
Published by Penguin on 2014-01-07
Genres: Suspense
Pages: 352
Reviewed by Jo

From the New York Times–bestselling author of Dream Eyes and Copper Beach, a brand-new quintessential Jayne Ann Krentz romance. It’s been thirteen years since Lucy Sheridan was in Summer River. The last time she visited her aunt Sara there, as a teenager, she’d been sent home suddenly after being dragged out of a wild party—by the guy she had a crush on, just to make it more embarrassing. Obviously Mason Fletcher—only a few years older but somehow a lot more of a grown-up—was the overprotective type who thought he had to come to her rescue. Now, returning after her aunt’s fatal car accident, Lucy is learning there was more to the story than she realized at the time. Mason had saved her from a very nasty crime that night—and soon afterward, Tristan, the cold-blooded rich kid who’d targeted her, disappeared mysteriously, his body never found. A lot has changed in thirteen years. Lucy now works for a private investigation firm as a forensic genealogist, while Mason has quit the police force to run a successful security firm with his brother—though he still knows his way around a wrench when he fills in at his uncle’s local hardware store. Even Summer River has changed, from a sleepy farm town into a trendy upscale spot in California’s wine country. But Mason is still a protector at heart, a serious (and seriously attractive) man. And when he and Lucy make a shocking discovery inside Sara’s house, and some of Tristan’s old friends start acting suspicious, Mason’s quietly fierce instincts kick into gear. He saved Lucy once, and he’ll save her again. But this time, she insists on playing a role in her own rescue . . .

Lucy Sheridan has come back to the small town of Summer River after being notified that her Aunt Sara has died and that Lucy is her heir.  Lucy hasn’t been back to her Aunt’s house since the summer she was sent away suddenly after a strange night that started with a teen party and liquor and Lucy being “rescued” by one of the local boys and dragged away.  Lucy still doesn’t really know what that night was all about but her only goal now is to get her Aunt’s house ready for sale and get back to her life as a forensic genealogist for a world-renowned private investigation firm.

 

Mason Fletcher has always known that there were some dangerous under currents in the small town he and his brother came to live in with their uncle after their parents died. Mason has never forgotten Lucy Sheridan or that night when she could have been harmed if he hadn’t caught wind of what was the party was really about. Learning that Lucy was back in town to take care of her Aunt Sara’s estate makes Mason wonder if he will have a chance to see Lucy all grown up. Mason still lives in Summer River. After leaving the police force he opened a security firm with his brother, so mysteries are nothing new for him.

 

A mystery is just what confronts Lucy when she has Mason come over to help her with some repairs to the house.  What they discover when they take down the horrible facing on the fireplace brings back that fateful summer party long ago.  They find the body of one of the boy’s who arranged the party and was Lucy’s dream date back then.  Mason and Lucy now have to follow the clues concerning not only the hidden agenda from that night but also just how his body ended up in her the fireplace and who is now working so hard to make sure the truth will never come out on how her Aunt really died.  Mason and Lucy work together to put the facts together while discovering that their long ago mild attraction has grown into a strong passion. Unexpected accidents seem to be following them.  It’s going to be a race to the finish to see if they can locate a killer before they lose a chance to grab the love that is just waiting for them on the horizon.

 

A tense relationship from the past becomes a fierce attraction surrounded by danger when a security professional and a forensic genealogist come back together in River Road.  Lucy was not really sure about letting Mason back into her life, even if it was only to help with the repairs needed to list her Aunt’s house on the market.  But when they discovered the body of a boy that a young Lucy wanted and Mason never trusted, it becomes a journey filled with passion and danger and they unearthing of the dark undercurrents in a sleepy small town.  I really enjoyed watching as Mason and Lucy not only unraveled the past to find out what happened but also as they accepted that their relationship was now passion filled and worth the chance to find out where it would lead.  I really love suspense stories, especially when I don’t figure out the true reason behind everything or who is the actual villain, River Road was exactly one of those stories. Ms. Krentz kept me intrigued and guessing until the very end and when you toss in the romance that blossomed and then bloomed between Mason and Lucy and you have a great story that belongs on your keeper shelf.

HOW TO SEDUCE A VAMPIRE (WITHOUT REALLY TRYING)
by Kerrelyn Sparks

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Source: Publisher
This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
HOW TO SEDUCE A VAMPIRE (WITHOUT REALLY TRYING) by Kerrelyn SparksHow to Seduce a Vampire (Without Really Trying) by Kerrelyn Sparks
Series: Love at Stake #15
Published by Harper Collins on 2014-04-29
Genres: Paranormal
Pages: 384
Reviewed by Jo

From New York Times bestselling author Kerrelyn Sparks comes the next adventure in the Love at Stake series, featuring a Master vampire and his love affair with a woman of many secrets . . .Vampire Zoltan Czakvar is on the hunt for the truth about his father's death. He's been searching for a very long time—since 1241, in fact. And he is not about to give up, even when he's attacked by a woman with striking blue eyes and a hell of a right hook!Neona is also on the hunt. She's looking for a mate and she thinks muscled Zoltan will work just fine. After all, men are good for only one thing. Soon, though, she realizes there's more to this handsome vampire than just sexual prowess. But she's keeping a secret from Zoltan, something so big that it will rock the vampire world.Can their newfound love survive . . . even if their passion means the destruction of her world?

Neona is a warrior princess who lives with a small group of warrior women in a remote valley in Tibet.  They are unknown and need to stay that way because their lives have been pledged to a bigger cause and have been for many, many centuries.  When Neona and the other woman break their rule about no men, after helping a man who helped them in an attack, it’s the beginning of them learning just how the world has changed in the many centuries they have been apart and that not everything they have been told is the entire truth.  This handsome and strong man just might be the man worth mating with to produce a girl child with.

 

Zoltan Czakvar has been looking for the people who killed his father for over 800 years and finally he has a lead – an exact copy of the arrow that was used and that Zoltan has kept for so long.  Finding out just where that arrow came from and who the owner is begins a long and frustrating journey for Zoltan, that is until it becomes a journey filled with love and passion.  Now if he can just get the trust and acceptance from not only Neona, her mother the Queen and the other warrior women.  As if that isn’t going to be difficult enough, Zoltan is going to have to help them defeat the same ban of evil vampires and others who he and his people have been seeking for many, many years.

 

Neona is fighting a battle with herself and the “truths” that she and her friends have been told for so long.  However, fighting the attraction between herself and Zoltan fast becomes a losing cause, so Neona begins to figure out a way to have Zoltan be accepted by her mother and the other women in her valley.  Learning that Zoltan not only knows the men who have been attacking them but that he and his friends can help protect them and their mysterious lifetime charge, is going to be one heck of an undertaking if they are to have all the women learn to accept the many changes that are coming at them fast and furious.  Zoltan never expected the cascade of changes that his falling for Neona produced but when the worse happens, he is determined to put everything right – even if the cost might be greater than either Zoltan or Neona every expected.

 

A warrior princess and a ancient vampire learn that love can happen at anytime and all you really can do is hold on and ride the wave while fighting for your right to experience that same love.  How to Seduce a Vampire (Without Really Trying) not only brings Zoltan and Neona together but it also brings the present to a secluded group of warrior women and introduces a group of shifters previously thought to be extinct.  I had to laugh as I finished Zoltan and Neona’s story when I realized that the many changes and answers that happened all came from an arrow.  I had to love both Zoltan and Neona – Zoltan for his fierce courting of Neona and also his long hunt for who the arrow that killed his father belonged to, (mind you it was for a very different reason than I first thought) and Neona for trying to find a path between her new love of Zoltan and the mission that she and the other women in her valley are sworn to uphold.  Ms.Sparks pens a riveting stor, as things get shook up for the warrior women and as Zoltan and Neona found and fought for their love. How to Seduce a Vampire (Without Really Trying) is a journey of fighting to protect the innocent while a strong and lasting love is being discovered – full of touching parts and deadly danger. Just what I would expect from Kerrilyn Sparks’s Love at Stake series.

HEART OF STONE by Christine Warren

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DRAGON AWAKENED by Jaime Rush

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COWBOYS AND KILTS by Erin O’Quinn

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EDUCATING THE PLAYTPUS by Charlie Richards

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FULL MOON HELLHOUND by Jackie Nacht

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