Category: Paranormal


From Author’s Website

A vampire never gets old. But neither do his enemies. When a figure from Ethan’s dark past makes a splashy debut in Chicago, Merit and her Master don’t know whether he’s friend or foe. But they’ll have to figure out soon, because trouble is brewing in the Windy City.

At an exclusive society soiree attended by the upper echelons of the human and supernatural worlds, Merit and Ethan barely stop the assassination of a guest. When the target turns out to be a shady businessman with a criminal edge, Merit suspects a human vendetta. But the assassins have fangs….

The connections to Chicago’s Houses go deeper than Merit knows, and even one wrong move could be her last….

My Review:

First a few things about the series. I originally added the first book, Some Girls Bite to my Goodread To Read list in August 2010. I don’t remember who recommended it to me. For some reason, it got lost in the shuffle of life. Recently, I was looking at Goodreads and discovered the book again. But this time I discovered that there was 11 books, and 3 novellas in the series. I will admit that I read the entire series in approximately 14 days (from initial ebook purchase of the first book to my finishing this book). I love these characters. I love Merit almost as much as I love Kate Daniels from Ilona Andrews. I have a feeling that I will be re-reading this series much like I do the Kate Daniels series.

This series is not a romance series. This series is a Paranormal Fantasy series that does happen to have some romance and sex included. But the romance does not drive the individual books or the series.

Now, on to Dark Debt. This was a great book. While the author does give basic background for first time readers of the series, I would not recommend reading this book without the previous ones, especially Blood Games. Of all of the books in the series, this one’s twists and turns are more complicated that involved than previously. Chloe Neill did an amazing job on this book.
As much as I loved this book, I couldn’t give it 5 Horseshoes. There are some continuity issues. One is series related, but the rest are related to this book only. The series related one is about the existence of Incubi. In book 9, Wild Things, one of the supernatural creatures kidnapped was an Incubus. However, in this book, the reader is told that Incubi do not exist and the legend was created as a way to explain the sexual bent that some vampires’ powers take. While it isn’t a big continuity issue, it still bugged me.

The book related continuity issues mostly had to deal with Merit’s wardrobe. While most nights she is dressed in her beautiful new leathers (which actually don’t get mentioned as being her new ones since she was gifted them) there are a few times that she wears the House’s standard uniform, a black suit. There is one scene where she is wearing the suit and ends up chasing a perp. After the unsuccessful chase, there are mentions of her wearing her leathers. Once again, for most people not a big deal, but for me…… I feel that this should have been caught in the various levels of editing that takes place. There are other continuity things but I can’t think of them at this time.

Overall, I greatly enjoyed this book and can’t wait for the next book to come out in March 2016.

I give Dark Debt a 4 Horseshoe rating.

This book was purchased by the reviewer.

Dark Debt is available from Amazon in Kindle and Print editions. Also available from Barnes and Noble in Print and Nook editions.

Publication Details:

Author Chloe Neill
Title Dark Debt
Format Ebook
Length 295 Pages
Publication Date March 2015
Publisher New American Library
ISBN 978-0-6981-8071-0

R.C. Murphy spends her nights writing urban fantasy novels and a slew of short stories for her blog, The Path of a Struggling Writer. By day she is a not so mild-mannered housewife, wrangling vampires, demons, and various other nasty creatures. R.C. has joined forces with fellow writers, artists, and actors to form the Zombie Survival Crew where she reviews movies, TV shows, as well as penning articles on important survival skills. Her articles on survival in the zombie apocalypse are featured in the ZSC anthology Undead is Not an Option. Readers can find visit her at her web site, her Facebook Fan Page, and Twitter.

Let’s Talk About Sex

Lately there’s been a rash of authors throwing up their hands and staring in wonder as their fans tear into them about their newest books. Not because the writing is shoddy or lacking in any substantial way. Oh no. It’d be understandable if authors were being called onto the carpet for releasing a half-thought-out book. Instead, they’re being shamed for not turning their novels into literary porn. (If you just imagined two novels humping, you’re my new best friend.)

Yes, sex in books is often something wonderful, thrilling, and gives the reader’s day a little extra oomph when they’re done reading. However, sex cannot and will never be the entire plot of a book. A sex scene is one moment in the lives of these people/creatures the author created. If a book was nothing but sex, then readers assume the character has no job, no responsibilities beyond a good shag. That’s not how life works, and even in the most fantastical, sex-driven books, it isn’t how a character would live their life.

I’m one of those weirdos who thinks a character (and heck, even the guy at the end of the bar who’s been sending me drinks all night) has to earn the right to have sex. Sex is never a guarantee. There’s nothing thrilling about opening a romance novel and knowing when, where, and how hard a couple are going to go at it. Romance novels are stories of how these two people build a relationship. How they learn to trust each other enough to be nude and vulnerable in front of a virtual stranger. There’s no magic wand you wave in real life that’ll tell you if the cute chick checking you out at the party is sane enough to sleep with, because at some point she may snap and you’re missing important parts of your body. You. Never. Know.

Also, it is hard to write sex, guys. Okay, rephrase that . . . it is hard to write good, inventive sex scenes that aren’t a rehash of everything else already committed to paper. Think of it like a dance, not everything is going to be Thriller. Sometimes you end up with a limping, off-beat tango and your partner has broken your big toe from stepping on it repeatedly. It is like trying to reinvent the wheel. Sex has been around, literally, forever. It is why we’re all here. Finding new, exciting ways to describe something we all will do at some point in our lives sucks. And not in a good way. Authors are banking on their talent to keep the reader from stopping mid-fictional-hump and saying, “That’s not how it works.” I’m not immune to this. Every time I think I have something cool to offer, my editor shakes her head and I realize she’s right. There are physical limitations to what a normal person can do. Remembering those in an effort to write the New Best Sex Thing Ever is a trial.

Not every sex scene works in the context of the story plot, either. An author may come up with the Hamlet of sex scenes, but if it stalls the flow of the plot, it’ll have to go. Maybe the scene will move to later in the book. Maybe it’ll be dumped in a “For Later Use” file and put into another story. Just depends on where the characters are mentally, physically, and if the flow of the story calls for a little time out. Unlike real life, sex for the sake of having sex doesn’t often fit into a story.

The next time you feel like grabbing a pitchfork and torch over an author’s lack of sex scenes in a book, stop and think what you’d do in their shoes. We try our best to titillate readers while telling a good story, but sometimes we can’t make Fetch happen. And we shouldn’t. When you force something on a story, it falls apart. I’d much rather read a sexless romance story than a forced sex scene. Focus on good writing, not cheap thrills. There’s an entire internet full of porn for that.

*********

Thank you R.C. for coming to PonyTails today! I am doing a giveaway of 1 ebook of Enslaved. This is open to everyone. The winner will be selected using Random.org and will be announced around September 24, 2013. Please fill out the form below.

About Enslaved:

The gods are flawed . . . and they make awful parents.

Deryck knows first-hand the cruelty of the gods. Three thousand years after his birth, he is still trapped, forced to service humans as an Incubus—unable to choose whom he sleeps with, and living a life completely devoid of love. There is no out for him. No hope. Or so he thought.

Shayla McIntire spent five years getting her life back on track after the accident claiming her husband’s life. She is content to a nice, boring, subdued life free of the abuse she suffered before. Her friends are worried. They want her to find the man of her dreams and move on.

Little do they know, the Powers That Be have decided the man of Shayla’s dreams for her. There’s just one hitch, he’s enslaved to the gods and it will take power she doesn’t know she has to free him. Deryck isn’t the only one hoping Shayla will free him, though.

Enslaved is available from Amazon and from Barnes and Noble.

From Publisher’s Website

When Nowhere is Safe

Most people avoid the dreaded Whitechapel district. For Honoria Todd, it’s the last safe haven. But at what price? Blade is known as the master of the rookeries—no one dares cross him. It’s been said he faced down the Echelon’s army single–handedly, that ever since being infected by the blood–craving he’s been quicker, stronger, and almost immortal. When Honoria shows up at his door, his tenuous control comes close to snapping. She’s so…innocent. He doesn’t see her backbone of steel—or that she could be the very salvation he’s been seeking.

My Review:

What an amazing mix of genres! This Paranormal Steampunk was a great read. I was captured on the first page. I’ve been fascinated by Steampunk for a couple of years and have loved Paranormal since before it was called Paranormal. So to mix these two genres was ingenious. Ms. McMaster did a wonderful job of creating a credible world and characters.

I’ve re-read this book a few times. I love the characters, especially Blade. Such a complicated man. On the surface he is hard and unapproachable, but underneath he cares for all of the people in Whitechapel. He truly wants to help them and to provide protection. But because of his position, he has to charge a price.

Honoria is just as complicated character. She is trying to hide from the Echelon, the highest members in society. At the same time she is trying to hide her siblings and care for them. But when she loses her job, she is forced to reach out to Blade for assistance.

Ms. McMaster has created a world that shows the Steampunk elements and the Paranormal elements, but also managed to keep the Victorian sensibilities and class structure as realistic as possible. I would easily rank this book among the top Steampunk romance novels I’ve read. I would say that it is a very close second to Maya Banks’ Iron Duke.

I can’t wait to read more from Ms. McMaster and this Paranormal Steampunk world.

I give Kiss of Steel a 5 Horseshoe rating.

Kiss Of Steel is available from Amazon in Kindle and Print editions.

Publication Details:

Author Bec McMaster
Title Kiss Of Steel
Format Print
Length 448 Pages
Publication Date September 2012
Publisher Sourcebooks Casablanca
ISBN 978-1-4022-7027-7


From Publisher’s Website

THE SECRETS SHE’S UNCOVERiNG WILL BE HIS TO KEEP…
Centuries ago, when their ship crashed to Earth, paranormals of all types settled secretly into our world, quietly going about their business with humans none the wiser. Self-ruling and careful to stay below the radar, all is threatened when Valkyrie archaeologist Lorin Schlessinger and her werewolf geologist partner Gabe Lupinsky inadvertently draw evil attention to Earth and its treasured natural resources.

My Review:

I enjoyed this story.  At first, I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy a Beta Hero, but I did enjoy Gabe.  He isn’t my favorite male werewolf but I did enjoy his journey.  I felt that Lorin was a bit too much of an Alpha for him.  I wasn’t sure how they would be HEAs, but Ms. Hogan did a nice job of resolving their differences enough for them to be together.

Lorin is a very strong character and very sure of herself and her work.  Sometimes it was over bearing and me a tad sick of her.  But eventually she mellowed out.  I think Gabe helped with that.

Over all it was a well written story with an interesting premise as to how the supernatural beings came to be on earth. I’m looking forward to reading the next book in this series.

I give Chase Me a 4 Horseshoe rating.

Chase Me is available from Amazon in Print
and Kindle
editions. 

Publication Details:

Author
Tamara Hogan
Title
Chase Me
Format
Print
Length
331 Pages
Publication Date
June 2012
Publisher
Sourcebooks Casablanca
ISBN
978-1-4022-4604-3

Seleste deLaney is the author of eight published works (with two more coming soon). Her preferred romance and erotic genres include contemporary, paranormal, and Steampunk. She hasn’t always been a full time writer. She started life as a chemistry major at Purdue University, and later was a high school teacher. In addition to her writing, she is busy raising two little goblins of her own. You can find Seleste in various locations online. Please visit her at her website, on Twitter, and on Facebook.

Remy (Remus) is one of the new character in Seleste deLaney’s Blood Kissed series—a very vocal one. He’s here today to talk about something a little different: animals. For those of you new to the Blood Kissed series, you might want to start with the short story prequels, available from Decadent Publishing and many other online retailers. The first novel in the series, Kiss of Death, released yesterday (August 28) from Mundania Press.

And now, take it away, Remy.

I’m going to get a little serious for a moment first. I know, I know, what happened to the Remy we’ve gotten to know and worship on this blog tour? No worries, he’ll return in a moment, but serious stuff first.

Animals have a long history with humankind. Beyond providing food and clothing and companionship, at various stages of history, animals have been worshipped as gods. Let’s take the Egyptians for example. Three of the best known Egyptian gods are Horus (falcon), Anubis (dog), and Bastet (cat). They also had a crocodile god, a scorpion goddess, a cow goddess, and even a hippo god. Ibis, jackal, vulture, beetle, fish, bull, ram, cobra… the list goes on and on. That was a society that truly revered animals.

Now… we keep them as pets and put them in zoos and torture them to perform tricks for our amusement. As a vampire of some renown, I watch this and have a difficult time seeing the difference between your food… and my food. And I don’t mean the worshiping part.

You see, while I do have an appreciation for dogs and cats, I find my fellow “men” (and women) make the best pets. It is amazing the things a human can be trained to do given the right system of rewards and punishments. And the lead up to that time only makes them all the tastier. When I’m settled into a place for a while, I like to keep at least one or two. (Honestly, a pair is always better. It’s fun to watch them play and fight and… other things.) But at the moment, I am sadly pet-free.

Yes, I’ve debated a cat since my busy life wouldn’t upset it nearly as much as it would bother a dog, but my wardrobe these days just couldn’t hold up to the scratching and spraying. It is the 21st century after all. No, a human seems much more agreeable.

Plus, if I had a human, I could also have a dog since the human could care for it in my absence. It seems the perfect solution to my solitary lifestyle. So, while I won’t put you in a zoo for all the world to see (for an admission fee), I will keep you fed and clean and housed. For any who wish to apply, my requirements therefore are as follows:

  • Must love (or at least tolerate) dogs
  • Must have a bit of a submissive streak (I’m willing to show you who’s in charge, but it’s easier for all involved if you don’t make me show you too much)
  • No allergies to cleaning products or latex
  • And a fairly high tolerance for pain would be helpful

If you aren’t fond of the above offer, remember my kind are among you, and you are little more than animals to most of us. Do unto others and all that. We’re watching.

… Oh, and I prefer brunettes. Or redheads. Redheads are nice. Hell, blonds are okay. And bald is beautiful…

*********

Thank you Remy (and Seleste) for coming to PonyTails today! Hopefully we can find a pet that is a perfect fit for you. 😉

About Kiss of Death:

Too many years of killer vamps have triggered the curse of the Blood Kissed. They’ve awakened the bloodline that can alter their world, because her blood has the power to control them all—even make them destroy each other.

Jocelyn thought her troubles with vampires were over when she drove a stake through her boyfriend Max’s heart two years ago. Even though she’s engaged to Chad, she’s never really forgotten him. Now Max is back, and Chad is taking her into the heart of the vamp community—and they’re the ones trying to keep her alive. The ones who love her and each seek to claim her for their own. Because once the elders know who she is, they’re all going to want her …or want her dead.

R.C. Murphy spends her nights writing urban fantasy novels and a slew of short stories for her blog, The Path of a Struggling Writer. By day she is a not so mild-mannered housewife, wrangling vampires, demons, and various other nasty creatures. R.C. has joined forces with fellow writers, artists, and actors to form the Zombie Survival Crew where she reviews movies, TV shows, as well as penning articles on important survival skills. Her articles on survival in the zombie apocalypse are featured in the ZSC anthology Undead is Not an Option. Readers can find visit her at her web site, her Facebook Fan Page, and Twitter.

PonyTails (PT): First off, congratulations on your debut novel! Be Ours Forever started life as a blog serial, why did you decide to publish it?

R.C. Murphy (RCM): Thank you! Be Ours Forever was a very long, draining process. I’m just glad it is out finally.

I realized after the third chapter of BOF went up that I had something going for me. It took over a year to do the serial story and my very few, yet devoted blog readers loved it. I decided to go back over the manuscript and do a complete re-edit. There is also a chapter that never went public. I added it in to give readers a vital scene they’d clamored for on the blog. Yeah, I’m mean. I held back the really fun part.

PT: What was your inspiration for Be Ours Forever ?

RCM: My best friend, who the book is dedicated to, is to blame. Occasionally we give each other writing challenges. His was to write a sex scene between two men and a woman where the men weren’t afraid to touch each other. The challenge was supposed to be a 5000 word scene to toss up on the blog. Once I got going, it became apparent that it’d be something far more complicated than the original challenge.

PT: I know you love monsters and paranormal creatures. Why do you like writing and reading about them?

RCM: I always root for the monster. Growing up, my family was very into late-night horror movies. My parents helped organize a haunted house for my school. Stuff like that tends to stick with a kid and bled over to the types of books I read.

I grew up reading crime novels. Humans are the real monsters in our world. Putting a vampire or werewolf face on a character gives writers license to delve deep into human nature while giving readers a false sense of, “This is okay because it is fiction.” Hate to tell them, but most of the horrors in my writing comes from real life atrocities.

PT: You recently started another blog serial, Breakfast With a Werewolf. Do you like writing serials over full stories?

RCM: Breakfast With a Werewolf, the current serial, was finished over a year ago. Originally I was going to pair it with Be Ours Forever as a bonus story. My friend and editor, Jinxie, and I discussed the idea, but sidelined it because the worlds didn’t mesh well enough. Since I love BwaW so much, I broke it into chunks for the blog. It isn’t nearly as long as BOF.

Overall, I prefer full stories. It flows better for the reader. One issue with BOF is that it took a year to finish. You can tell the difference in writing style from the beginning to the end, despite all of our editing.

PT: What is on the horizon for you in regards to your writing?

RCM: I am working on a full length novel, Enslaved. There is a sneak peek of it in the back of BOF. It should be done by the end of the year. After that, I am planning to write a prequel novella in the BOF universe with Jarlan and Meghan. That’s about as far out as I’ve planned right now. Any further and I’d end up crying from the workload.

PT: How do you have time to do your writing, stuff for Zombie Survival Crew, make things for your Etsy Shop (Murphy’s Miscreations), and raise a well-rounded little boy?

RCM: Coffee is my best friend.

I micromanage my schedule hardcore. It is rare for me to sit and do absolutely nothing. If I can’t work on fiction, I write for the ZSC. If there is nothing I need to do there, I make jewelry.

My kiddo is awesome. He knows when I’m at my desk that I’m busy. I make time to spend with him, teaching him how to cook and other important skills for a boy to have, such as sword fighting. What? Don’t all mothers teach their boys how to be knights? I know you prefer cowboys, but I’m stuck in the renaissance.

PT: While it is true that I love my cowboys. I do love my Renaissance Kilted Scotsmen as well. Both are just YUM!

PT: You have a wonderful collection of cows (we need pictures), have you ever thought of writing a story about their adventures?

RCM: My cows are my companions. Ask anyone that I travel to conventions with, there is always at least one stuffed cow in my luggage.

I haven’t considered writing stories for them. Sometimes they try to sneak into my books and I have to kick them out. Not many vampires collect stuffed animals. (The Anita Blake series is an anomaly. That’s also where I got the name Sigmund for one of my companions.)

PT: Do you plan your stories or do you just put pen to paper and see what happens?

RCM: Most of my stories start as random ideas I chase down a dark alley and bludgeon with a keyboard. That being said, the new novel, Enslaved, is different. I’m taking the time to plot it out and finding the actual writing goes a lot smoother with an outline to work off of. I guess you could say I’m a hybrid writer.

PT: What are your go to resources when you write? Favorite books, websites, technology, etc?

RCM: I fully admit to abusing Wikipedia when researching stuff for my books. Be Ours Forever involved quite a bit of research on torture devices. Good ol’ Googling dug up pictures of stuff that will be ingrained on my brain until the day I kick the bucket. If I can’t find anything on those sites, I ask friends. They’re an odd bunch.

PT: Being a newly published author, what advice would you give aspiring authors?

RCM: I don’t like the word aspiring. For a lot of people, they tack it on to give meaning to a hobby. If you want to publish, you will. There are too many avenues open to writers nowadays to hold them back.

Look at me, I published a vampire book in a market that wouldn’t touch vampires with a ten foot pole right now. Countless agents and publishers have said, “No more vampires!” That didn’t stop me. I did it on my own, with a little help from friends, namely Jinxie.

I guess what I’m saying is, if writing is your passion, you will make it happen. Keep writing. Continue making forward progress on your manuscripts. Learn to love editing, especially if you are going to self-publish. Don’t stop doing what you love because it feels hard. You’re giving birth to a new world, new people, there will be pain involved.

Thank you for inviting me onto your blog, Jenn. All of the support you’ve given me in the last year really means a lot. It reminds me why I decided to continue writing–for those that believe in what I am capable of.

Thank you to R.C. for visiting PonyTails. I love supporting new authors and seeing them succeed. I can’t wait to read Enslaved. Good luck on all your endeavors.

I am doing a giveaway of 2 ebook copies of Be Ours Forever . This giveaway is open to everyone. Please fill out the form at the end of the post. I will close the sign up on Friday August 24, 2012 at 11:59pm EDT. I will use Random.org to select the winner and will announce the winner here on Monday August 27, 2012!

About Be Ours Forever:

To die a slow, painful death, or become one of the blood-sucking undead?

For Brenda Verga, there’s no choice. She can’t fathom leaving her husband, Nico. Nor can she ignore the allure of her husband’s best friend, Rich, when he offers to help turn her. Together, the three of them explore what it means to be part of a triad—three souls brought together by an unbreakable bond forged in blood.

However, happily ever after isn’t in the cards . . . yet. The trio must answer to the Elder’s Counsel—a group of vampires burdened with keeping tabs on their kind. Brenda must convince them that her blood bond with Nico and Rich won’t be a danger to mankind. And failure will come at an extremely high cost.

If you click the book image it will take you to my review of Be Ours Forever.

Be Ours Forever is available from Amazon in Kindle and Print editions.

From Author’s Website

To die a slow, painful death, or become one of the blood-sucking undead?

For Brenda Verga, there’s no choice. She can’t fathom leaving her husband, Nico. Nor can she ignore the allure of her husband’s best friend, Rich, when he offers to help turn her. Together, the three of them explore what it means to be part of a triad—three souls brought together by an unbreakable bond forged in blood.

However, happily ever after isn’t in the cards . . . yet. The trio must answer to the Elder’s Counsel—a group of vampires burdened with keeping tabs on their kind. Brenda must convince them that her blood bond with Nico and Rich won’t be a danger to mankind. And failure will come at an extremely high cost.

My Review:

This story started out as a web serial on R.C. Murphy’s blog. Before the story was finished, she pulled it down and started working toward publishing it. I will admit that I only read part of the serial before it was taken down. But I feel that it was a great decision by Ms. Murphy to publish this lovely piece of work.

Sometimes it is hard for an author to give depth to their characters in a novella length novel, but Ms. Murphy did not have a problem. By the end of the first chapter, the reader has a wonderful sense of who the characters are as individuals and as an intimately bonded trio.

I did get confused about the reason behind the test the Elder’s Counsel put them through, but I blame that on my cold. I have gone back to reread it and figured it out. But that scene was well written and I felt as if I was in the room, trying to figure out how to help Brenda, Nico, and Rich.

I truly hope that Ms. Murphy will write more about these characters. I feel they have a lot more to share with the world.

I give Be Ours Forever a 4 Horseshoe rating.

Join us on Friday August 17th for an entertaining author interview with R.C. Murphy!

Be Ours Forever is available from Amazon in Kindle and Print.

Publication Details:

Author R.C. Murphy
Title Be Ours Forever
Format eBook
Length Novella
Publication Date August 1, 2012
Publisher Self
ISBN 978-1-4782-2150-0

From Publisher’s Website

Lethally passionate, wickedly dangerous…

Renegade warrior Damion Browne is a soldier of soldiers, an enforcer of the code of honor. With ruthless precision, he calculates risks as deliberately as he does his lover’s satisfaction. Now it’s up to him to defeat a new generation of female Super Soldiers, including the one woman perfectly programmed to be his downfall.

His enemy…or his soul mate?

Lara Martin has never felt powerful, until she’s brainwashed to destroy the one man who can help her find the answers she so desperately seeks. Alone and embroiled in lies, Lara must turn to Damion for the key to the truth…

My Review:

The Danger That Is Damion is the third book in Lisa Renee Jones’ Zodius series. Damion is a complete follow the rules and orders type guy. Due to a tragedy when he was younger, he never disobeys or breaks a rule, even ones he imposed on himself. Until Lara shows up in his life.

It was fun to watch Damion struggle with his need to follow rules and his instinct to break them all for a woman. But more interesting was Lara’s struggle to protect Damion until she figured out who she really is. She has been brainwashed to believe that the good guys, the Renegades, killed her family. But because she disobeys an order and her link with Damion, she discovers the life she thought she had was a lie.

I greatly enjoyed the story, but the first book in the series, The Legend of Michael, is still my favorite. I’m anxiously waiting to find out who the next Zodius books is about.

I give The Danger That Is Damion a 4 Horseshoe rating.

The Danger That Is Damion is available from Amazon in Print and Kindle editions.

Publication Details:

Author Lisa Renee Jones
Title The Danger That Is Damion
Format Print
Length 323 Pages
Publication Date May 2012
Publisher Sourcebooks Casablanca
ISBN 978-1-4022-5162-7

From Publisher’s Website

The Man of Her Dreams

He is like a prince in a fairy tale: tall, outrageously handsome, and way too dark for her own good. Amanda has been hurt before, though. And with her daughter’s illness, the last thing she needs right now is a man. But the power of Dai King is hard to resist. And when he threads his hands through her hair and pulls her in for a kiss, there is no denying it feels achingly right.

In a Land of Nightmares

After being trapped in the Shadowlands for centuries with the goblin horde a constant threat, Dai revels in his newfound freedom back in the human realm. But even with the centuries of magic he’s accumulated, he still doesn’t know how to heal Amanda’s daughter—and it breaks his heart. Yet for the woman he loves, he’d risk anything…including a return to the Shadowlands.

My Review:

After the strong reviews Ms. Husk received for the first Shadowlands book, The Goblin King, I was looking forward to this one. I never read the first book, and I don’t know if that contributed to my confusion and overall disappointment in this story. The pacing of the information reveal drove me nuts.

Until about 40 or so pages in to the book, I thought the story was taking place in America. Because of the references to the story’s location not being as cold as Wales, I knew it wasn’t in taking place in the United Kingdom. However, I was surprised to discover the story was taking place in Australia. About 20 pages in to the story, we find out that the hero, Dai, is 1951 years old.

During the story, it is revealed that Dai has taken a vow of celibacy. Because of some of the back story, I assumed it was because of his abuse at the hands of Romans. However, more than halfway through the story we find out that he is actually a virgin. There is no explanation as to why he took a vow of celibacy.

Other than the information pacing, my other major issue with this book was how angst ridden it was. It was mostly a pitty party, woe is me, story about Dai. I get that he had been abused by the Romans, and was cursed to the Shadowlands to live as a Goblin, etc. But grow up! You have lived almost 2000 years. During that time you learn to let these things go and move on, especially someone who understands how interconnected magic and actions are.

I had to force myself to finish this book. I wanted to put it down more than once. I’m not remotely interested in reading the next book to find out what happens to another goblin who was set free from the Shadowlands.

I give Kiss Of The Goblin Prince a 2 Horseshoe rating.

Kiss Of The Goblin Prince is available from Amazon in Print and Kindle editions.

Publication Details:

Author Shona Husk
Title Kiss Of The Goblin Prince
Format Print
Length 330 Pages
Publication Date May 2012
Publisher Sourcebooks Casablanca
ISBN 978-1-4022-6206-7

From Publisher’s Website

A STRANGER IN THE NIGHT…

He had once been a warrior of the Light, one of the revered Paladin. A protector. But now he lives in darkness, and the shadows are his sanctuary. Every day is a struggle to overcome the bloodlust. Especially the day Karissa shows up at his doorstep.

COMES KNOCKING ON THE DOOR

She is light and bright and everything beautiful—despite her scratches and torn clothes. Every creature of the night is after her. So is every male Paladin. Because Karissa is the last female of their kind. But she is his. He may not have a soul, but he can’t deny his heart.

My Review:

Wow! What a great story. Ms. Hilaire gave her readers such an amazing tortured hero! Taking a Paladin, the Dungeons and Dragons version of the Holy Warrior, and making him a vampire, was pure genius. This book could have easily been very angsty. But Ms. Hilaire did a beautiful job of balancing the inner turmoil of being a Divine creature with the demands of being vampire.

Then the poor man was faced with caring for a female Paladin. Not only does he have to fight the bloodlust of being vampire, he also needs to fight the need to make Karissa his mate.

Karissa is the best match for the fallen Paladin. Once she was over her concern about his vampire nature, she set about trying to convincing him that he isn’t the evil creature he believes himself to be. She shows him that even though he is vampire, he will always be a Divine Creature.

This story was absolutely amazing and one of my favorites for 2012!

I give Deliver Me From Darkness a 5 Horseshoe rating.

Deliver Me From Darkness is available from Amazon Print and Kindle editions.

Publication Details:

Author Tes Hilaire
Title Deliver Me From Darkness
Format Print
Length 352 Pages
Publication Date February 2012
Publisher Sourcebooks Casablanca
ISBN 978-1-4022-6434-4