demons

Kicking Butt in Atlanta: “Blood Trinity”

7775742Blood Trinity by Sherrilyn Kenyon & Dianna Love
Pocket Books: October 19, 2010
Genre: Urban Fantasy; Paranormal Romance
Source: Free From Library

I’d go there again!
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Thanks to the Kate Daniels series I’ve been more inclined to read urban fantasy of late and for whatever reason I somehow came across Sherrilyn Kenyon and Dianna Love’s Belador series. Blood Trinity is the first in the series and introduces readers to Evalle, an outcast in the larger brotherhood of the Belador warriors.

Like the other warriors Evalle has power and she uses those powers to fight against other paranormal beings. Unlike the other Beladors, Evalle is a half-breed and as such she is an Alterant, a person that can shift into beast form. Unfortunately, this transformation is unique to Alterants and the other Beladors fear that Evalle will lose control of her beast and kill without consequence; a fact that has been proven over and over again with other Alterants. Evalle has been successfully avoiding being caged by the Belador elite thanks to two loyal friends who have covered for her in the past. However, when a new player rolls into Atlanta is seems that Evalle might not be able to avoid being caged unless she can prove that she’s not responsible for a recent murder. Complicating matters is the impending apocalypse. Sigh. As if your day job isn’t tough enough. (more…)

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Chinese Dragons and Romance in “Dragons of Heaven”

dragons of heavenThe Dragons of Heaven, by Alyc Helms Angry Robot: June 2nd, 2015 (Fantasy)*

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The view was nice, but the food was bad (meh)**

In The Dragons of Heaven, Missy Masters is trying to live up to her grandfather’s legacy as Mr. Masters, one of the original superheroes of the mid-twentieth century. We are introduced to her present-day struggles to be taken seriously and to defeat a Chinatown crime boss in San Francisco. The narrative is split between the present-day and some time in Missy’s past. It’s also split between San Francisco and China. In one plot line, Missy is a superheroine fighting crime when mysterious magical walls spring up around all Chinatowns in the world, and around China itself. This launches Missy into the world-saving business, as she is the only person who can dissolve the walls. In the other, she travels to China to learn from a Dragon and become a better superheroine. (more…)

“Waking the Dragon” – Typical Paranormal Romance

wakingthedragonWaking the Dragon by Juliette Cross
Lyrical Press: June 9th, 2015 (Paranormal Romance)*

Beach vacation
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I read these because they’re like candy. Fun, quick and easy to devour, and not at all nutritious. I also have a low tolerance for them – reading too many at a time leaves me feeling bloated and a little bit ill.

This one has all the familiar paranormal romance tropes – a brooding, domineering not-quite-human hero who protects and guards the independent human heroine as they protect the world from the big bad evil that threatens to destroy everything. Their initial dislike of each other which quickly transforms into desire and love. Oh, and they’re almost star-crossed, too, with the humans and the half-dragon Morgons not getting along very peacefully and Moira (our heroine) being the scion of one of the most powerful human families. (more…)

Lots of Women of the Otherworld in ‘Otherworld Nights’

otherworldnightsOtherworld Nights by Kelley Armstrong
Published by Orbit: October 7th, 2014 (Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance/Novellas)*

My (overall) rating: The view was nice, but the food was bad (meh) vintagesuitcase3vintagesuitcase3

Otherworld Nights collects several (eight) stories in the Women of the Otherworld series by Kelley Armstrong. The sum of all my knowledge about the series comes from the TV show, Bitten. While I enjoy the TV show, I’m not sure that I’ll read the books. For one, the love triangle in Bitten, which features Elena, Clay, and Elena’s human boyfriend (for the uninitiated, Elena is the only female werewolf in this world, Clay is her former lover/fiancé, who turned Elena into a werewolf without her knowledge or permission) is too much a love triangle for me, and even though the result is obvious, I liked both men in the love triangle enough – well, I almost liked her human boyfriend better. The other reason is that I can’t get on board with only one female werewolf. There are plenty of stories, the Mercy Thompson and Alpha & Omega series by Patricia Briggs among them, where women survive the change less often than men (because they’re inherently weaker, or less… survivalist – and let’s not even touch that one for the moment), but to just have one female werewolf makes no sense to me. If one was turned, surely there have been other women strong enough to survive. It feels like an obviously convenient plot device that only serves to make the heroine Special.

All that said. It’s probably no surprise that I didn’t enjoy the short stories about Elena and Clay.

Now, for my review.

(more…)

Ghosts, Demons, and Vampires in ‘Deadly Curiosities’

deadlycuriositiesDeadly Curiosities by Gail Z. Martin
Solaris, June 24th, 2014 (Urban Fantasy)*

My rating: I’ll go there again! (4/5)

Not your typical romantic urban fantasy, Deadly Curiosities focuses on the supernatural powers, the fighting of demons, and the magic of paranormal fantasy. The story is set in modern-day Charleston (and having had a chance to visit the city while I finished the book, it seems the author portrays the city pretty accurately. And the houses she mentions? With the porches and gardens and side doors? Absolutely gorgeous. But I digress).

Cassidy Kincaide owns and runs her family’s antiques shop, but her assistant manager is a Weaver who can weave magic in threads and in data (he’s a magical hacker!), and her business partner is a centuries-old vampire who has worked alongside her family for generations. Cassidy herself has the ability to read objects’ histories and moods when she touches them. Together, Teag (the Weaver), Sorren (the vampire), and Cassidy defend the city and its inhabitants against ghosts and objects that have negative and harmful resonances, buying these objects from people, sometimes neutralizing their energies, and hiding them away. (more…)

Bittersweet Magic: an entertaining urban fantasy

bittersweetmagicBittersweet Magic by Nina Croft
Entangled, November 11th, 2013 (Paranormal Romance / Urban Fantasy)*

This book definitely falls into the category of guilty pleasure. I’m not sure that it is truly an amazing book, but I had such fun reading it.

Roz, our main character, is some kind of immortal, but she doesn’t know what. In fact, she doesn’t know much about her past at all. She has been indebted to a demon, Asmodai (great demon name, by the way), for 500 years. Five hundred years ago, she agreed to perform 13 unspecified tasks whenever he asks her, in return for her life, and the deaths of the villagers who burned her mother at the stake as a witch and who were all set to burn her, too.

The story opens with Asmodai calling in his 13th and final favor – that Roz find a specific key hidden in a monastery. So Roz goes under cover as a very unlikely nun, in order to find it. Only she gets there too late, witnessing the murders of most of the nuns, and the stealing of the key by a shadowy figure followed by demon dogs. This leads her on a chase for the key, and to Piers’ door. Piers, though Roz doesn’t know it, is a vampire. And Head of the Order of the Shadow Accords (established to keep demons, humans, and elves in line), whom Roz has been taught by Asmodai to fear. (more…)