Genre: Historical

IN THE HANDS OF THE OUTLAW by Renee LaRuse

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

Source: Author
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.
IN THE HANDS OF THE OUTLAW by Renee LaRuseIn the Hands of the Outlaw by Renee LaRuse
Published by Self Published Genres: Historical, Interracial, Western
Reviewed by Talia Ricci

Tilly Jackson is a barmaid in the West.  Usually content, she sometimes gets a ‘feeling’ and realizes that the time to move on from where she is to another town. She’s getting that feeling now, but something else has caught her eye, or rather someone else…

 

Leo Samuels can’t believe that someone as lovely as Tilly would want to be with him – which is why he is a bit leery of her request.  But as more time passes, what started out as a brief encounter turns into something more.

 

First off, Tilly was brave and I adored her.  She wasn’t afraid to go after what she wants and she wanted Leo.  Speaking of Leo, he was a long tall drink of blue eyed water and was sexy with a capital S.  I like how he treated Tilly and I loved that he loved her.

 

Not a bad novel. I found that some of the typos pulled me out of the story, other than that, In the Hands of an Outlaw wasn’t a bad book – but it could have been a bit more polished.  I think Renee LaRuse is a talented author having read more books from her and I can honestly say that her books are entertaining and quite erotic.  Which are both winners in my book.

CROSSING OVER by Christopher Riley

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.
CROSSING OVER by Christopher RileyCrossing Over by Christopher Riley
Series: The Rise and Fall of the Roman Vampire
Published by MLR Press Genres: Historical, MM, Paranormal
Reviewed by Lisa

Years of service to the Roman Empire enabled Jovian to have a plot of land free and clear once he retired from the military.  Flourishing fields of wheat and a healthy herd of sheep allow Jovian to prosper and enjoy life with his lover Betto.   When their home is attacked by werewolves Jovian manages to kill a female.  Taking the body to Rome as proof they need further protection proves to be the wrong action as Jovian almost dies on the journey.  His savior is none other than Rome’s ruling Caesar, Titus.  Unbeknownst to Jovian he’s been saved by a vampire who forms a cloying attachment to the retired soldier. Leaving Titus and going home to Betto ends up destroying Jovian’s entire life.  He is forced to witness the murder of his parents, young sister, and his lover. The final horror happens as Titus changes Jovian into a vampire.

 

Watching the world as twenty centuries come and go, his name and identity change with the times as well.  Living as Roman Stafford and owning the Blue Moon bar the vampire continues to be plagued by his nemesis throughout the long years.  Each time love enters Roman’s life his hated enemy makes certain that his happiness is destroyed in one form or another.

 

For the past two months Roman’s been dating artist Cole Ryan. He can’t explain it but the talented artist is special and calls to the vampire’s soul.  Roman discovers Cole nearly dead from a drug overdose and the vampire is forced to step in to help the artist whether he wants it or not.   As he tries to cure Cole of his addiction Roman can also feel Titus nearby.  Somehow, some way, it’s time to make a stand to love Cole and rid the world of Titus.

 

Crossing Over proves to be an intriguing romance blended with a suspenseful historical story.  The far past comes alive as Jovian/Roman’s life unfolds, his lovers, and his struggles to be free of Titus.  The main character experiences the high of true love and the emotional destruction of losing that love because of a mad man.  Enjoy the fascinating tale Crossing Over, a long time journey of true love.

THE PILLAR by Kim Fielding

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 PILLAR by Kim FieldingThe Pillar by Kim Fielding
Published by Dreamspinner Press Genres: Historical, MM
Reviewed by Lisa

The town of Zidar prides itself on following many time honored traditions in a place where Christians and Muslims are able to live in relative peace. One such tradition concerns punishment at the town pillar.  Those found guilty are whipped and left for dead.  If they survive the ordeal the matter is over.  In the case of a slave being punished at the pillar, they are freed if they survive.

 

Years ago Faris was flogged for thievery and left to die at the pillar.  The healer cut him down, took him home and saved his life though Faris would always bear severe scars.  The elderly healer sees something in the orphaned thief and gives him the chance nobody else ever had.  Over time Faris learns everything his mentor can teach him about herbs and healing.  After his beloved mentor passed Faris becomes the town healer and follows the tradition of releasing those sentenced to the pillar.

 

Faris swore he wouldn’t continue the tradition after what happened the last time, but there he was on that cold, wet night cutting down the large, badly injured man with the obvious scars of wearing a slave collar.  It does take all of Faris’s formidable skills to save Boro from the flogging, as well as injuries and starvation caused by his previous master.  Once on the road to recovery the lonely healer discovers a kindred spirit in the arms of Boro, a captured soldier turned slave.  As Faris and Boro begin to accept the gift of finding each other, though under harsh circumstances, the ex-slave’s old master comes calling.  And guess what he wants back…

 

A simple tale gathers strength and evolves into a moral, honest romance in The Pillar.  Author Kim Fielding paints a moody, introspective story of redemption and love for readers to embrace.  Faris is a man of many layers, a complex man who saves Boro which saves them both in the end.  Enjoy The Pillar, a complicated, fascinating story that proves the power of love on so many levels.

THE WICKEDEST LORD ALIVE by Christina Brooke

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Source: Publisher
THE WICKEDEST LORD ALIVE by Christina BrookeThe Wickedest Lord Alive by Christina Brooke
Series: The Westruthers #3
Published by St. Martin's Press Genres: Historical
Reviewed by Vanessa

Eight years ago, Lady Alexandra agreed to a marriage bargain in order to escape her father.  After running away the night the marriage was consummated, Lady Alexandra was no more.  She became Elizabeth “Lizzie” Allbright, the adopted daughter of a small town pastor.  Planning on returning to claim what is hers, she is shocked when her husband, the Marquis of Steyne, appears in the small town demanding an heir from her!

 

The Marquis of Steyne, Xavier Westruther, wed the young Alexandra in order to repay his mother’s debts.  Now, eight years on, he finds that he needs an heir to carry on the family name, and what better way than to track down his runaway bride?  Yet, Xavier soon finds there is more involved than just begetting that child, as someone intends to do him harm.  However, he isn’t too sure of how close that villain is to him or his wife.

 

The Wickedest Lord Alive was an interesting novel that seemed to be missing a little something for me.  I couldn’t understand how Lizzie could be half in love with Xavier so early on.  There was no real chemistry between the two characters, and I had a hard time dealing with him showing back up like that.  I had to continually remind myself that The Wickedest Lord Alive is a historical novel, and the contemporary female wouldn’t have the rights she enjoys back then.

 

The mystery and villain in The Wickedest Lord Alive was engaging, but I prefer my heroes to have more well-thought out plans and not be able to have the wool pulled over their eyes so quickly.  I’m still wondering why Xavier thought it would be a good idea to bring a baby into this mess in The Wickedest Lord Alive and not wonder about the safety of said child and/or mother!  Overall Lizzie and Xavier were two enjoyable characters, but he didn’t really seem too wicked as that was never really shown in The Wickedest Lord Alive, it was told.  Lizzie was really too good to be true and seemed a lot braver than her love match.  I’m kind of wishing that Xavier had been led on a more interesting chase in their HEA quest in The Wickedest Lord Alive.  Another sticking point for me in The Wickedest Lord Alive was a confusing scene in that we are given a point “A” and a point “C”, but no linear point “B” to show how we got to point “C”.

DESIRE BY BLOOD by Melissa Schroeder

DESIRE BY BLOOD by Melissa Schroeder

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

Source: Author
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.
DESIRE BY BLOOD by Melissa SchroederDesire By Blood by Melissa Schroeder
Series: By Blood #1
Published by Self Published Genres: Historical, Paranormal
Reviewed by Miranda

Five-Hundred year old vampire Nicodemus Blackburn does not care for London’s ton. Unfortunately, he has no choice but to immerse himself within it when a rash of murders looks like the work of a sadistic Made vampire killer. He must find the culprit and put them down before they call too much attention to vampires. However, Nico finds himself distracted by the beautiful Lady Cordelia Collingsworth.

Lady Cordelia Collingsworth has basically been abandoned by her family. She is in London working to pay for her household. She is using her ticket into the ton to research the man everyone is talking about, but she never counted on Nicodemus Blackburn changing her life forever. How will Cordelia respond to the possessive Nico and what will she do when she learns of his true nature? More importantly will either of them survive the villain determined to ruin them both?

Vampires, vampires, vampires they are fierce and they are fantastic in Desire By Blood! I haven’t been this excited about a new vampire series in a long time! I am shocked by the fact that this is a historical and I am still so in love with it. I have always been a fan of my vampires staying in the present or future. I’ve never been one to enjoy the flashbacks to a vampire’s past but Desire By Blood is simply decadent! The thrilling thing about Desire By Blood is Ms. Schroeder’s world-building. The reader gets to enjoy a memorable setting. I literally felt pulled into the era. Next thing you know I will be taking afternoon tea! We learn the basic differences between Born and Made vampires while also learning about the sought after female Carriers. I am totally intrigued by the hierarchy of this vampire world and look forward to learning more in the next book which I hope is coming very soon!

Nico and Cordelia give new meaning to the word desire! I swear I had to fan myself when these two are in the room together. The reader can absolutely feel the powerful lust between them. Nico drips sex appeal while Cordelia is a bit modest but I love how as the story goes on Cordelia becomes stronger and more forceful with her opinions. These two will be fighting and making up for centuries to come!

I cannot wait to see what happens next with the rest of these fascinating characters. Specifically, Malik and Lady Diana; it was pretty obvious these two could be mates but it is also obvious that they may have to travel a much longer and harder road to find happiness. I can’t wait to discover more about the Egyptian vampire and I just know that Lady Diana is keeping secrets of her own.

Melissa Schroeder’s passionate and poignant Desire By Blood is destined to leave a mark on your heart! It’s unforgettable and a Joyfully Recommended Read!

A GENTLEMAN TIL’ MIDNIGHT by Alison DeLaine

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TO WED A WICKED HIGHLANDER by Victoria Roberts

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THE TROUBLE WITH HONOR by Julia London

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SWEET TALK TO ME by Keiran Kramer

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WARRIOR REBORN by Melissa Mayhue

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