paranormal romance

More from Nalini Singh in “Wild Embrace”

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Wild Embrace by Nalini Singh
Berkley: August 23, 2016
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Source: Free From Publisher

I’d go there again!
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After reading the fantastic Allegiance of Honor, I was ecstatic to get my hands on Singh’s new novella collection. Don’t get me wrong, I was happy to revisit some of my favourite characters from the Psy-Changeling series in Allegiance, but I did miss the emphasis on romance. Happily, Wild Embrace addressed exactly what I was missing from the novel. Each novella included in this collection offers readers a peak into the world, as well as answers to some questions that have been plaguing fans throughout the series. While all of the novellas are great, my favouite ended up being Flirtation of Fate. (more…)

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Returning to a Favourite World with “Allegiance of Honor”

26089799Allegiance of Honor by Nalini Singh
Berkley: June 14, 2016
Genre: Paranormal Romance; Urban Fantasy
Source: Free From Publisher

I’d go there again!
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Since my recent conversion to the cult of Nalini Singh a couple of years ago I have anxiously awaited each and every new addition to Singh’s Psy-Changeling series. Throughout this series Singh has created a rich futuristic world that is full of all kinds of race tension, but also fabulous romances. I can’t think of another series that so well combines complex world building with fully developed romantic relationships. Nalini Singh, she is a master, and this is again proven with her newest book, Allegiance of Honor and its shift for the entire series. Allegiance propels the series into new territory while also giving readers a glimpse into the lives of so many of the beloved characters of the series. (more…)

Where the Magic’s At: “On the Edge”

6329547On the Edge by Ilona Andrews
Ace: September 29, 2009
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Source: Free From Library

I’d go there again!
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I’m a fairly recent addition to the Ilona Andrews bandwagon. I recently caught up on Andrews’ fabulous Kate Daniels series and was left with a void as I await the newest installment (coming September 2016). Luckily, Andrews has more books out in the wild that do not feature Kate Daniels and On the Edge is one such book.

On the Edge is the first in Andrews’ Edge quartet. In this world there are three worlds. First is the human world, the Broken, where magic doesn’t exist. Second, is the Weird, where magic is king and the world is ruled by the aristocratic bluebloods. In between these two worlds is the Edge. In the Edge magic is present, but its a kind of mixture of the Broken and the Weird. In the Edge, magic can cement your power, but the level of your power can come at a terrible price, a fact that Rose Drayton knows all too well. (more…)

Gunmetal Magic has guns, shapeshifters, and romance

12288282Gunmetal Magic by Ilona Andrews
Ace: July 31, 2012
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Source: Free from Library

I’d go there again!
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It’s strange and interesting to read about Kate through different eyes, and to get into her best friend Andrea’s head. Andrea has her own voice, apparent from the very first page with her enthusiasm and expert knowledge about everything guns and weapons.

Andrea is a fun heroine, and a good match for Kate. She struggles with her past, with her feelings for Raphael, and with the bouda clan. Her determination for independence wars with her desire to save others. As beastkin instead of a shapeshifter, as a former Knight of the Order dismissed because she’s not human, she struggles to find a place where she belongs.

The big plot is very similar to the plots in the Kate Daniels books. An ancient Egyptian god decides now is an opportune moment to take back his power and become a god again in thousands of followers’ eyes. Another god opposes him and hatches his own schemes for world domination. As Andrea and Raphael, her estranged mate and the alpha male of the bouda clan, investigate the murder of several of Raphael’s metal reclamation employees, they uncover both gods’ plans and endanger themselves trying to prevent the slavery of thousands of people by said gods. (more…)

The Visitor

17204332The Visitor by Amanda Stevens
MIRA: March 29, 2016
Genre: Mystery
Source: Free From Publisher

I’d go there again!
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The wait for Steven’s fourth installment of her Graveyard Queen series has been a long one. The last book was published in 2012 and it’s only now, several years later that readers are treated to a new installment that follows graveyard restorer Amelia Gray. I don’t know why there was such a long delay, but I can tell you that The Visitor is worth the wait. From the start readers are dropped into the highly atmospheric and haunting setting of the old South.

Amelia Gray has come a long way since her introduction in the first book in the series. Most notably she has decided to stop following her father’s rules; she’s no longer ignoring the ghosts that are attracted to her, and this has severe repercussions for both her personally as well as in her new relationship with John Devlin. In The Visitor Amelia is followed by a ghost that could be her identical twin, except for one thing, this ghost has gouged out her eyes. This visitor is only one of many that come to Amelia, but each of them compel her to Knoll cemetery, a place that only came to be after the violent mass death at a commune many years ago. For Amelia, there is a personal connection to that cemetery and only by listening to those ghosts that Amelia will find out what the connection is. (more…)

1421990Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost
Avon: October 30, 2007
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Source: Free From Library

I’d go there again!
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Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series is a series that I’ve heard a lot good things about over the years, but not a series that I’ve felt inclined to pick up. When I came across it in audio format I thought I would finally give it a try and see what all the fuss was about. And I’ve come to the conclusion that I should pay attention to the “fuss” more often.

Catherine Crawfield is a half-vampire who’s been stalking the undead for a number of years. Her mother has a hate on for all vampires and isn’t really cool with the fact that Cat is half-vampire. To atone for something that’s not her fault, Cat hunts for vampires. Things get interesting when Cat attempts to kill Bones, an old vampire who objects to Cat’s attempt to murder him. Instead of killing Cat, Bones decides to train her. After all, Cat does not give any obvious signs that she’s stronger than the average human, which just might be the ace in the hole that he needs to take down the vampires that he’s hunting.

For her part, Cat is uneasy about teaming up with a vampire. All she knows about vampires is what her mother has told her. So, to Cat’s mind, all vampires are murderers who deserve to die. Bones slowly challenges that opinion while simultaneously encouraging Cat to embrace the fact that vampire blood is also running through her veins. Ever so slowly does Cat start to accept the interesting bits of her nature, and with that subsequent acceptance, Cat also starts to feel something more than antagonism for Bones. (more…)

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…)

Duel Review: “City of Light”

25420415City of Light by Keri Arthur
Signet: January 5, 2016
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Source: Free from publisher

We often agree in our assessment of books, as our reviews of  Tower of ThornsI Spy a Duke, and Uprooted show. This time, we disagreed. Stacey loved it; Jaclyn barely finished it. We all know reading experience is personal, a relationship forged between author and reader.

Read on to find out what we loved and what we didn’t. Hit the comments and let us know how you feel about it.

The Book…

In a world still recovering from a war between shifters and humans, Tiger is alone. As a déchet, a creature created by humans to balance the field against the shifters, she alone remains among her kind. Despised or hunted by all races: shifters, humans, and vampires, she hides in a destroyed bunker with the ghosts of her past. Until the night she leaves her bunker on a supplies-gathering mission and hears the cry of a child. Unable to ignore the cries and leave the child, Penny, for the vampires to eat, she unwittingly becomes entangled in an attempt to save other kidnapped children like Penny. Penny’s uncle Jonas, a full shifter, and a woman named Nuri, are investigating the disappearances of these children, and need Tiger’s specialized skills to succeed.

(more…)

The Seriously Awesome “Shards of Hope”

17159943Shards of Hope by Nalini Singh
Berkley: June 2, 2015 (Paranormal Romance)

Outstanding Adventure
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I’ve been putting off writing this review for awhile now, as I’m not really sure how to convey in intelligible writing how much I loved Shards of Hope. This book was seriously awesome and I think it just might be my favourite book in Singh’s Psy-Changeling series to date, and I can now say that with authority since after finishing this one, I went back and read each book in the series that I hadn’t read.

Shards of Hope is Aden’s story. Aden is the leader of the Arrows, the deadly, military arm of the Psy race. For years they were the personal assassins of Councilor Ming, and now that Silence has fallen, these men and women are now free to start new lives. Aden is at the forefront of this change. He wants something different for his family and he needs to model that for them, which is why he needs a partner. (more…)

My Currently-Reading List

Full disclosure: Sometimes I don’t finish books. Sometimes I put a book down to pick up another that strikes my fancy more immediately. Sometimes I begin self-improvement or skill-teaching books, with the objective of, well, improving my skills, and then never get further than the first two chapters.

And sometimes, I end up reading six different books at the same time, because my attention span won’t hold for the length of a full novel.

Often, this doesn’t have anything to do with how good I think the book is, or how much I’m enjoying it… I just get distracted by the next shiny cover, scintillating romance, rollicking plot, or magical world.

Does this ever happen to you?

Anyway, that’s where I am today, and that’s why today’s post is not a review, but a reading list. I hope you enjoy it.

 

Fantasy

The Witches of Eileanan has been sitting on my bookshelf for a decade or thereabouts. This year, my goal is to whittle my bookshelves down to three (I’m down to three shelves and 3-5 boxes). In order to get rid of some of them, I need to read them first, to find out if I want to keep them. This one is really interesting, with a headstrong young heroine (The Chosen One), whose destiny is big and troubles many. She’s just started off on her journey across the land to find a new mentor witch and begin further studies in magic.

So far: recommended.

This one could be fantasy, could be urban fantasy. It’s a police procedural (cop drama) in a medieval-ish world that focuses on the heroine’s struggle to fit in in male-dominated profession as she and her new partner investigate a mysterious murder of a mage. It’s good, complex, and the world building is solid.

So far: recommended.

 

Urban Fantasy

Trailer Park Fae, which I just purchased at the bookstore because getting my library to buy books often takes ages. Already in the second chapter, the mundane vs. faery worlds are intriguing, and the main characters have some intense emotions that haven’t really been explained yet. I like that the main character is a hero, instead of the more common heroine.

So far: recommended.

Magic Slays is a re-read, because a little while ago I started feeling the need for comfort reading. I love Kate Daniels, heroine of this series by Ilona Andrews. Curran and Kate have accepted their feelings for each other and are beginning their new cohabiting, domestic life of bliss (yeah, right), when she finally gets a client for her new private investigations firm. Of course, the case is strange and extremely dangerous…

So far: recommended.

 

Gaslamp Fantasy

The Shadow Revolution: Crown & Key – another urban fantasy with a male main character. This should be good, but for some reason I’m just not that interested. Playboy Simon and his friend/mentor solve magical crimes in gaslamp London.

So far: not recommended.

 

Historical Fiction/Romance

Without a doubt, my favorite thing about Elizabeth Bennett is her sense of humor. My other re-reading kick comes from watching Pride and Prejudice again (with Colin Firth, obviously). “Sequels” of novels written by different authors are often weird, and can the new authors really do the original characters justice? However, I have really enjoyed Elizabeth Aston’s continuation of P&P. Her books have the same witty vibe, fantastic characters, and strong romances, but with a modern, independent-women twist. Also, Elizabeth and Darcy are always off in Europe, so at least I don’t have to worry about them not fitting the mold. The Darcy Connection is cute, although I’m discovering this time around it has basically the same romantic plot as P&P. Sigh.

So far: recommended with reservations.

 

Nonfiction

One of those self-improving, skill-teaching books I sometimes tell myself to read and never finish: Ask for it. I haven’t gotten very far, and I disagree with the argument that the gender wage gap exists because women don’t ask for things and men do, but it has some interesting tips and it looks like the worksheets at the end will be helpful.

So far: undecided.