Thursday, October 31, 2013

Book Review - The Left Hand of God by Paul Hoffman

The Left Hand of God
by Paul Hoffman
Published 2010
384 Pages

At a running length of 436 pages, The Left Hand of God by Paul Hoffman stands at an interesting point between tombs designed for young adults, and adults who wish to be young. Genre aside, classification of this type of book shall remain solely in the religious-fantasy-fiction category -- and rightly so. 

The premise follows a 14-year-old Thomas Cale, whose entire life (or of that he can remember) is spent within the confines of a holy sanctuary run by the cruel, malicious, and just downright mean redeemers. For all intents and purposes, the redeemers are asses. With public displays of torture, it would seem their sole intent is to break the will of those unfortunate enough to be in their possession; exclusively young boys. 

As a result of their continued maliciousness, several of the boys are executed in stunn
ing detail. Gore and descriptions of such, have been integrated into the read by Hoffman with what I tend to suspect, a rather substantial enthusiasm. In some cases, the description of horror enacted by the Redeemers goes beyond (I would like to think) a young adult's repertoire, and borders adult-level magnitude. Some may like this and in certain places it is appropriate, but not at every passage describing some nasty thing happening. 

The mentor (and tormentor) of Cale surrounds one particular Redeemer who goes by the name of “Redeemer Bosco.” Bosco suspects that Cale is ‘special’ in ways others are not. In fact, throughout the read, Hoffman makes it strikingly clear that Cale has some sort of magical power – be that of truly magical or bred into him by the Redeemers, Cale can do feats no one else can. He has unique abilities – some of which identifies with the cast of Assassins and hence begins to set up a continuation of Cale’s story beyond that of the sanctuary. That is, is he being trained as a holy assassin?

While we are given hints of Cale’s true nature throughout, the books primary focus surrounds his escape from the Sanctuary to the glitter-city of Memphis (the non-Nashville type). When Cale manages to escape through the badlands en route, the Redeemers go on the hunt to return Cale to Bosco which inevitably leads to several deaths.

The Left Hand of God stands with an interesting premise and is generally a fun read. Easy to lose yourself in Cale’s escape from the Redeemers, as a reader, you are left wanting more information on several topics such as ‘Where did the Redeemers come from and what is their overall purpose?’, and ‘Why is Cale special and how did he get that way?’ Turning the pages faster and faster, the information trickles in and leaves you in a cliffhanger at the very end and, I might say, a bit of a rut.

This is the first book in a trilogy – the next being called The Last Four Things. My own personal recommendation is 3 ½ stars, and I look forward to the next book.

Reviewed by Matt


Book Review - Night Owl by M. Pierce

Night Owl (The Night Owl Trilogy, #1)
by M. Pierce
Published 2013

273 Pages

This is my new favorite book of the year. I had no defense against it. It took me, kept me up, and wouldn't let me turn away from it until I was finished! I was exhausted and knocked off my feet by the intensity of this book and the train wreck of a relationship it presented. A must read!

Matt Sky has the perfect life by anyone's standards. Money, a long-term girlfriend who caters to him, a successful career… and yet, he is perfectly miserable--depressed, angry, and detached. He lives his secluded, controlled life limiting his exposure to the real world. Hannah Catalano is on a fast track to nowhere. She has a dead-end job and a deadbeat boyfriend. Her passion for writing brings her in touch with Matt, a writer looking for an anonymous writing partner. His only stipulation is that they do not exchange any personal information--none, ever! But when he accidentally sees a photo of Hannah he becomes obsessed and is unable to get her out of his mind.

They are brought together fast and furious, until circumstances all but destroy them. My heart broke, and I was devastated along with the characters. Completely immersed in their story, I loved this book! Two things didn't set well for me: a dimension of their relationship (I can't say more than that without giving it away); and the epilogue, which threw me! Still, I loved the book! 

Reviewed by Kelli


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Book Review - Truth by Aleatha Romig

Truth (Consequences, #2)
by Aleatha Romig
Published 2012

474 Pages

I must be a sucker for punishment because I couldn't wait to read this, and to find out what happened to Claire Nichols! I was not only shocked and confused by the ending of the first book in the series, but was eager to continue on with this train wreck of a relationship!

Claire has survived captivity, and in the process she and her captor, Anthony Rawlings, have fallen in love. What? I know, it sounds appalling, unbelievable, and it is in fact difficult to grasp. Further,
Anthony now believes that they can build a future together and put the past behind them! He wants Claire back, and this time wants it to be by her own choice. With sordid obligations behind him, he is ready to prove to Claire that he is capable of changing, and that he loves her completely.

Aleatha Romig is the master orchestrator of spinning webs from the past and introducing new characters to create new plots and intrigue, whereby we are swept away in this crazy world she has created. A great read, but a long one, so settle in for the ride… and make sure you buckle up! 

Reviewed by Kelli


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Book Review - Made For You by Vi Keeland

Made For You (Cole, #2)
by Vi Keeland
Published 2013

340 Pages

Since their week in paradise, Jack Cole and Sydney Aldridge have become inseparable. 
In the first book, we learn that Jack has two business ventures, one of which is questionable. And we see that Sydney is struggling with it. Now, Jack is running his businesses, and Sydney has returned to doing what she loves the most--performing. After giving up so much in her last relationship, she has vowed to never let a man stand in her way again. And so, when an offer pops up to tour Europe with her friend's band, it is an offer she cannot refuse! Still, she is torn. She and Jack have spent almost every day together over the last four months, and she doesn't want to leave him! 

Jack is supportive of Sydney pursuing her dreams, and encourages her to go on the tour, reminding her that he never wants to be a barrier to her achieving all that she has set out to accomplish. Now on tour, the unthinkable happens when a misunderstanding puts their relationship to the test. Both Sydney and Jack suffer life changing events that have the potential to destroy their relationship. Can they survive the distance? Can Sydney accept all of Jack, good and bad? And can Jack overcome his overwhelming jealousy? You must read to find out! 

This was a great book, and I loved the roller coaster! Also, I sense other characters may show up in another book, searching for their HEA!

Reviewed by Kelli

4.25 STARS 

Book Review - Touched by Darkness by Catherine Spangler

Touched by Darkness (Sentinels, #1)
by Catherine Spangler
Published 2013
304 Pages

Dr. Kara Cantrell's main goal in relocating to a small, sleepy town halfway across the country is to protect her son, Alex. Alex's father, being part of a supernatural world Kara was only beginning to understand, was brutally murdered. Devastated, Kara was left without the answers she needed to keep her son safe... but the supernatural world won't let them get away that easily. 

Alex's father, Richard, was part of an otherworldly species known as the Sentinels. And now that Alex's abilities are getting stronger, Kara is forced to admit that her son is just as otherworldly as his father. Further, she realizes that she cannot run to keep her son safe, and cannot teach him what she does not know. So, when she meets another Sentinel, Damien Morgan, she is determined to get the answers she needs. What she doesn't realize is that Damien needs her help as much as she needs his. 

Sentinels are formidable creatures, capable of incredible feats. However, these same feats make them vulnerable, as their energies are broadcast, and can be picked up by an evil species inhabiting earth--a species whose primary goal is to destroy the Sentinels. Besides Alex's abilities, Damien is keenly aware that Kara is a conductor, and that he needs her help to battle the evil forces. But Kara has gone down this road before, and it's a road that threatens to destroy all that she has come to know and love in this world.

This was a fantastic read with memorable characters and a well-paced plot. I loved it! And although Alex's role is significant, Kara and Damien's romance is in the forefront. A great story, and a wonderful introduction to the Sentinel series. I'm excited to read the next book!

Reviewed by Stephanie


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Book Review - Jake Undone by Penelope Ward

Jake Undone (Gemini, #2)
by Penelope Ward
Published 2013
311 Pages

From their first meeting, Nina is captivated by Jake. Intelligent, witty, and too handsome for his own good, Jake is also kind and engaging. But there is something else about Jake, something that seems to be preoccupying his thoughts and keeping him from getting close to Nina...something that is shrouded in mystery. Still, she cannot deny the extraordinary attraction developing between them. And as the attraction intensifies, so does the mystery. But there is a good reason for Jake's secretive behavior. If Nina were to discover the truth, he would lose her forever. 

This book was fantastic--I blinked and it was over! I absolutely loved the characters, especially Jake. Tattooed, brilliant, gorgeous, and pretty much a dream date with his kind and attentive demeanor, it would be worth ignoring the secrets just to hang out with this guy! My favorite part about Nina was getting a peek at her thoughts, which were always humorous and relatable. And the secondary characters were fantastic, too! A clever plot, exceptional writing, and well-developed characters make this book a must-read! 

Available on Amazon

Reviewed by Stephanie

Kelli and I both read this book, and loved it! Here is her review:

I devoured this book, and read straight through the night till I was done! I could not put it down, and absolutely loved it! The author, Penelope Ward, is great at building suspense for a big reveal, and boy was this one a doozie! From the first pages, I thought the plot was going one way, but it went in an entirely different direction that I couldn't believe! Such great weaving of the web with many lives involved. I felt a range of emotions, from anger to shock to love, but never did I feel lost! And I was compelled to keep turning the pages to reach the end.

Jake Green is the gorgeous, tattooed, and pierced little brother of Allison Abraham, whom we met in Gemini. Jake is brash, outspoken, and a bit of an enigma to those he lives with in New York. He is also ridiculously smart. And when a new roommate, Nina Kennedy, moves in there is an undeniable pull toward each other. 
Nina moved to New York to attend nursing school. She suffers from phobias, and fears small, confined spaces. With math being her worst subject, Jake offers to help her out by tutoring her. But oh, the cost--she will have to face her worst fears! The chemistry between them is unbelievable, and their journey is heart wrenching. I am so team Jake! The writing is brilliant with lots of funny little anecdotes. 

Reviewed by Kelli 

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Book Review - 1301: The Marquis by Christine Rains

1301: The Marquis (The 13th Floor, #1)
by Christine Rains
Published 2012
63 Pages

Once the Grand Marquis, and a nobleman within Lucifer's court, Marc is now just a mere shadow of the demon he used to be. An outcast, even by Hell's standards, he lives a relatively quiet life, along with the other residents of the 13th floor. All things considered, he has adjusted to his new life, and even feels happy sometimes, enjoying the simple pleasures afforded to the coffee. Oh, and spending time at the neighborhood cafe, where he can chat with the lovely Mae. 

Marc knows that if Mae was ever confronted by his ghastly demonic side she would run for cover, and would never look back! But for now, while she believes Marc to be human, they are friends. And so, Marc and the other resident misfits remain hidden in the human world. That is, until a demon shows up from Marc's past. And this isn't just any demon, this is a demon with a grudge! 

In order to save his friends, and himself, Marc will have to conjure up his own demonic side that has long sense been buried--the Grand Marquis. But the demon's return won't come without a price...a price Marc isn't sure he's willing to pay.

This first book was a great introduction to the characters of the 13th Floor series! I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Marc. He is both foremidable and lovable, and it's easy to forget his history! Still, we do get reminders (and they aren't pretty). Mae is great, too! A complimentary match for Marc, she is someone who can handle his character flaws and quirks with grace and humor. I am eager to learn about the other 13th floor residents, and to hear how their stories play out. A perfect Halloween read! So grab a bag of Smarties and settle in for some festive fun--the trick-or-treaters will have to wait. 

Reviewed by Stephanie


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Event - Fall Into Fantasy Giveaway!

Welcome to the 
Fall Into Fantasy Giveaway, hosted by urban fantasy author Ash Krafton's Demimonde...
This year, more than FIFTY AUTHORS of fantasy and paranormal books are giving away books and swag! Hope you’re ready to start clicking and start winning because the Rafflecopter awaits!

Giveaway runs until October 31st...plenty of time to get all your entries in...

The authors:
Ash Krafton, Red Tash, Rhonda Parrish, Niteblade Magazine, Sascha Illyvich, Jami Gray, Stacy Claflin, Sharon Saracino, Marsha A. Moore, Kim Smith, Alison Beightol,  Prudence MacLeod, Shannon McRoberts, Rosalie Skinner, Tricia Schneider, Liv Rancourt, Debbie Christiana, Fabio Bueno, Carmen DeSousa, Lyndi Alexander, Sheryl Nantus, Sharon Buchbinder, Jane Lebak, Terri Rochenski, Marian Allen, Etta Jean, Angela Brown, Mimi Sebastian, John Hundley, Julia Crane, Lisa Kessler, Gregory S. Close, Nana Prah, James Garcia Jr, Angela Myron, Nicole Zoltack, Robin Lythgoe, Georgia Lyn Hunter, Andrea R. Cooper, Kristine Croto, Cathrina Constantine, M. Pax, Stacy Claflin, Tina Moss and Yelena Casale, Mina Khan, Julie Flanders, Julie Reece, Jocelyn Adams, Elle J Rossi, Kiru Taye, Cesya MaRae Cuono, Jonathan D Allen, Kevin O. McLaughlin, Thomas Winship, Shah Wharton

The books:
BookBox: embed book widget, share book list

BookBox: embed book widget, share book list

BookBox: embed book widget, share book list

Thanks for entering!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Book Review - The Heavens Rise by Christopher Rice

The Heavens Rise
by Christopher Rice
Published 2013

While Niquette "Nikki" Delongpre is going about her life in much the same manner as other teenagers--dealing with the ups and downs of adolescence, spending time with her best friend, and chatting with the new boy on campus--she is unaware that evil forces are creeping up on her, surrounding her friends and family, and gearing up to unleash fury from the most unlikely of sources. 

With her loyal friends as constant companions, what harm could befall this young girl? She has always lived in New Orleans, attends the most prestigious school in the city, and lives a relatively charmed life. Alas, it is just one secret, one unfortunate misstep, that will set off a series of events that will alter the course of their lives for all time. And it is in this story, as we shift between two time periods nearly a decade apart, where true horror begins to unravel. But in the unraveling, pieces of a puzzle are ultimately shifting into place, just fitting together a little... differently. 

This is the kind of book that will stay with you long after you turn the last page. It was... haunting, torturous, exquisite. Perfectly paced, I loved the way information was shared at just the right time; slowly at first. It kept me guessing from start to finish! But throughout the story the reveals were abundant, building up and coming together like a symphony. Gorgeous. And although there may be sadness in some endings, there are others that leave you feeling... complete. That was this book. And it was heavenly. 

Reviewed by Stephanie


Cover Reveal - Waking Sarah by Krystal Shannan

Cover Reveal!
Waking Sarah
Vegas Mates, Book 3
by Krystal Shannan

Now Available!

About the Book

Council threats and Renata’s deadly attack leave the Vegas pack scrambling to regroup…

Heartbroken over the death of her fiancĂ© and tortured by a voice in her mind that’s haunted her since childhood, Sarah McLain learns her true ancestry after attending her best friend Margaret’s wedding. Can the pack save Sarah from the darkness that threatens to overwhelm her? Or will the wolf inside drive her over the edge before they can show her being a supernatural being is a good thing?

Chris Michaels is in charge of training the new latent werewolves at the O’Hearn mountain inn, now known as Woodhaven. His focus is tested when he finds out the beautiful but sad redhead, Sarah McLain, is his trainee. The connection he feels to her is strong but not magickal, and his wolf claims it foolish to listen to his human instincts. Can Chris heal her broken heart in time, or will he lose the woman he knows is perfect for him.

About the Author

Paranormal Romance author, Krystal Shannan, lives in Texas and is married to the love-of-her-life. They have a spunky young daughter who believes in fairies. Krystal professes to loving shoes, but avoids wearing them at all costs. She teaches in the public schools and writes as much as she can in her free time. If any more spare time can be squeezed from her day, she enjoys reading romance in all genres, but especially paranormal. If it has a 'Happily Ever After', she's on board!

Putting Magick in Romance one Soul Mate at a Time

Contact Krystal Shannan!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Book Review - Consequences by Aleatha Romig

Consequences (Consequences, #1)
by Aleatha Romig
Published 2012

573 Pages

This is a tough book to review because the subject matter is truly disturbing. That being said, I could not put it down. I've read a lot of anti-hero books... this book was definitely one of them. And although 
I can usually find a way to connect on some level with a redeeming quality in an anti-hero, I have to be honest, I just couldn't ever imagine connecting with this guy! Still, the book is very well written, and I had to see how the author would bring the story to a full circle. Well, that didn't happen. But what did happen was one wild roller coaster ride! The story takes you up, down, and in every direction! I felt angry, disgusted, sentimental, sad, and a whole spectrum of emotions. So, what is it about? 

Claire Nichols is mostly alone in the world. As a bartender, she has an enormous debt that she has hardly touched. She meets a mysterious, gorgeous, yet intense older man named Anthony Rawlings. She agrees to dinner, and ends up in his bed. And in the course of the evening, a contract is made on a cocktail napkin that changes the course of her life forever. Little does she know, it is all part of his plan... a well-developed, complicated, and deep-seated plan, based on even more complicated circumstances.

Claire is taken to an opulent home in Iowa, where the roller coaster ride begins! She is a master at compartmentalization, which keeps her sane and alive, as Anthony dictates and monitors her every move. Anthony's plans are ultimately threatened by Claire's strength and resilience. But while they appear to be a golden couple to the outside world, every day for Claire is a walk on the razor's edge. 

There were many times I wanted to throw my kindle across the room! But I could not put it down, and felt a bit guilty for loving it! Although it is a love story, it is mostly twisted and dark, and not for everyone. I was shocked by the cliffhanger ending. I've never read a story quite like it! 

Reviewed by Kelli


Book Review - Belong To You by Vi Keeland

Belong To You (Cole, #1)
by Vi Keeland
Published 2013

280 Pages

After deciding she does not want to spend the rest of her life with her boyfriend of seven years, Sydney Aldridge brings with her on her prepaid honeymoon her wild and crazy friend, Sienna. 
And boy, do they live it up! 

Sienna challenges Sydney to let loose on the trip, and to have a fling, as a way to jump back into single life. So, Sydney chooses (or is chosen by) Jack Cole... a very good choice! Sydney and Cole agree to a no-strings-attached, semi-anonymous fling that will conclude at the end of their seven days in paradise. Well, this is their story, and how their little experiment turns out! 

This book was great fun, but with some intense moments! A little too much excessive tequila drinking for my taste. Still, I devoured the story, and loved the escape! 

Reviewed by Kelli


Saturday, October 12, 2013

Book Review - The Forever Girl by Rebecca Hamilton

The Forever Girl (Forever Girl, #1)
by Rebecca Hamilton
Published 2012

263 Pages

This is a well paced, intriguing story that keeps you guessing. Sophia is a very warm and relatable character with which I enjoyed taking this journey! Her experiences in life haven't been kind or easy. But she has a few close friends, and a handsome new guy that may help her turn her life around. 

The storyline was exciting; however, I had a little trouble keeping track of the different clans, and remembering which clan had what powers and abilities. There was also a thread of storyline about Sophia's past and a former love that I wanted the author to elaborate on. That aspect of the story fizzled out, and was quickly wrapped up, leaving me wanting more details. 

The focus on characters being tied to nature, and all of life on earth--plants, animals, flowers--having a force to be tapped into, was very satisfying to me, as a reader. While most of the story was tied up in a satisfying way, leaving open the possibility for readers to create a future for these characters, there was also enough left open for a sequel, which I happily anticipate! 

Reviewed by Andrea

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Book Review - Carved in Stone by Kate Douglas

Carved in Stone
by Kate Douglas
Published 2013

226 Pages

This was an unexpected treat! It was my first book by Kate Douglas, and after reading it I want to read every other book she's written. It was that good!

Alexandria "Alex" Martin is a young photographer with a troubled past. Her mother died during childbirth, and her father left her in the care of family friends. Now a young woman, she has only seen her father sporadically over the last few years. Earlier in life, when she was still trying to please her father, and eager to earn his love, she assisted him on several of his own photo shoots. Taking credit for his daughter's work, he went on to receive a Pulitzer Prize. This painful event, coupled with a recent bad breakup, has left Alex guarded toward men and fiercely independent. Moreover, her issues surrounding trust have spilled over into her career.

Even though she longs for nature and field work, 
Alex has opened a photography studio where she shoots weddings and portraits of babies--far from her dream job! But she has to make a living, and feels that, as a woman, she has never been given a proper chance to showcase her talents. So, when a UC Berkeley professor contacts the studio to hire Alex Martin for a six week field assignment, she happily accepts! Of course, he believes he is hiring the elder Alex Martin (the Pulitzer Prize winning photographer)! Alex prepares for the shoot with the goal of proving herself capable of handling the job, and demonstrating her talents in the field. 

Imagining a "cartoon image of a cute little professor", Alex is shocked when the antiquities professor, Nathan "Nate" Murdock, turns out to be a tall, gorgeous hunk with hazel eyes, shoulder-length auburn hair, and muscles to die for! Likewise, thinking he has hired the elder Alex Martin, Nate is stunned (and a bit angry) with the apparent mixup. Still, he is instantly attracted to Alex's exotic beauty and independence. So, after a rocky start, and some verbal sparring, they agree to work together out of contractual obligation.

Deep in a relatively untouched forested region of Northern California, Nate shares with Alex his discovery of an obscure legend of a mysterious people, known as Spirit Walkers, who (according to legend) lived in the region before the indigenous tribes. Further, he has discovered petroglyphs hidden high upon a mountain, similar to those found within the cliff dwellings of the Anasazi, and just as peculiar.

After an arduous climb, Nate and Alex go about photographing the petroglyphs and taking samples. The first day goes well, and much is accomplished. However, on the second day, as they are exploring the opposite side of the mountain, they have an unfortunate encounter with drug smugglers. And after the smugglers foolishly shoot their guns inside a cave in the mountain, and narrowly escape being crushed by a rockslide, Alex and Nate are left trapped inside the cave. What they discover next can only be described as magical.

Tunnels, cliffs, waterfalls, and strands of purple and blue from glowworms illuminate the innermost passageways, creating an otherworldly experience. And of course, they may not be the only inhabitants in this magical world! With all its seduction, the world is taking on a new pace, where time is concerned. And like a hypnotic vortex, it may lead them to new depths...  but going home may no longer be an option. 

Every word, image, and element of the story flows off the pages with such beauty and significance it is breathtaking. And the romantic scenes are by far some of the most well written and original scenes I've read in years! Nothing is contrived. And the alluring tranquility of the cave, combined with the enchanting elements of the story, create a spellbinding journey with just the right dose of unexpected twists and turns! Every aspect of this story is fresh and original. And I loved every minute of it!

Reviewed by Stephanie 


Saturday, October 5, 2013

Book Review - Cloak & Silence by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Cloak & Silence (The League, #6)
by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Published 2013

Sherrilyn Kenyon is one of my favorite authors. With great wit, and believable parallel worlds, she is a leader, and a groundbreaker, in the world of paranormal fiction! Truly amazing! So, 
I couldn't wait to dive into the world of the Sentella, and to experience another gripping and intense whirlwind relationship! I was so excited about Maris Sulle's story! That being said, this book just didn't do it for me, and I was so disappointed!

Maris Sulle is a Phrixian soldier, and is deadly. He was born different from his family, and different is never a good thing. His differences have cost him everything--his family, his career, his birthright. The only thing he ever had that was any good was his life long friendship with Darling Cruel. He loved Darling, and had intimate feelings toward him. But Darling was as straight as they come. And although Maris's love for darling never seemed to interfere with their tight-knit bond, it was a problem for the other men in Maris's life, who eventually grew tired of competing and left.

Ture Xans is the disillusioned best friend of Darling's mate Zarya. He does not believe in love, fairy tales, or heroes. He knows that almost everyone is out for themselves, so he trusts no one. When he hears about Maris being a real life hero, he doesn't believe it. That is, until he experiences it for himself.

I don't know why I didn't connect with this book. It just lacked passion for me, and I just didn't ever feel a genuine connection in their pairing. I know that every series has its ups and downs, and I am not giving up on the series! But this book was just one of the downturns for me.

Reviewed by Kelli


Book Review - Revelations Coming by Glory Rabenaugh

Revelations Coming
by Glory Rabenaugh
Published 2013

209 Pages

Revelations Coming closely follows Christian history, but with a twist. It changes early accounts of famous religious events, and casts vampyres in all the lead roles. The author creates a world of good vampyres, the bloodline of Jesus; and evil vampires, the descendants of Cain. Both lines have two classes of vampyres: those born of the bloodline (known as the Mashiach), and those who drink of the bloodline (known as Talmidimthose). Venus is a combination of the two. And just for fun, angels are thrown into the mix, also of the good and evil varieties.  

Venus is too attractive for her own good. Having been raised in the foster system, she has encountered every possible form of monster (of the non-paranormal variety), all before her 18th birthday. From years of abuse, she lacks hope and faith in humanity. Alas, she will play a key role in determining whether good or evil prevails on earth. And she hasn't a clue. 

On her 18th birthday, Venus runs away from her foster home, and is approached by a very scary man who knows who she is. Fleeing from this man, she is picked up by a truck driver, who turns out to be a good samaritan. He takes her to his home, where she meets his kind and concerned family. Now in a safe home for the first time in her life, she decides to stay a while. Here, she meets the Archangel Michael, Riken (a descendant of Jesus), and Arias Hassan (a descendant of Cain). Finding herself drawn to each one of them, she is pulled in all directions. Three beautiful men are all wanting her attention, and she is attracted to all of them! 

Ultimately, she succumbs to the strongest pull of all. But this is where things get confusing! Still, it held my interest, and I read the book straight through! The end was disturbing, and a bit over the top. Also, I would have liked to see more attention to plot development, or perhaps to the book's editing. But I am eager to see what happens next, and will definitely read the next installment! 

Reviewed by Kelli
3.75 STARS

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Book Review - Prodigal Son by Debra Mullins

Prodigal Son (Truth Seers, #1)
by Debra Mullins
Published 2013
366 Pages

Rafael "Rafe" Montana is a descendant of the lost City of Atlantis who uses his special abilities as a seer to capture criminals. By looking into a person's eyes, in person or by way of a photograph, he can visualize their location. He also knows whether the person is dead or alive--a color visualization means the person is still alive, while a black and white image means the person is dead. This has always been the case. The only exception to his gifts has to do with family. Rafe cannot see the location of family members. 

In his routine work as a bounty hunter, and in perusing the otherwise mundane cases on his boss's desk, Rafe is struck by an image of a man named Danny Cangialosi. Something is very wrong. The image is in color, so Rafe knows that Danny is still alive. The problem is, he cannot see Danny's location. Utterly perplexed, Rafe accepts the otherwise straightforward case, and begins his search for Danny the old fashioned way. He has no idea that the search will make a full circle, bringing him face to face with his past, his family, and with a history that is far more complex than he ever imagined!

I enjoyed the banter between Rafe and Danny's step-sister, Cara. They share an instant attraction. And while they both are eager to find Danny, Cara knows that she needs to get to him first. Eventually, seeing that they share a mutual goal, they join forces. Still, their interactions are strained by the fact that Cara believes Danny is innocent, while Rafe believes Danny is running from the law.

Rafe is a strong, handsome, and protective man with superhuman powers. How can Cara resist such charms? Together, they embark on a journey of danger, discovery, and self awareness surrounding where they came from and (more importantly) where they are going. There were some inconsistencies near the end, but this was a great story with some unexpected twists! 

Reviewed by Stephanie