Sunday, July 28, 2013

Book Review - Second Chance Boyfriend by Monica Murphy

Second Chance Boyfriend (Drew + Fable, #2)
by Monica Murphy
Published 2013

321 Pages

I was so happy this novel was already published when I finished its prequel, One Week Girlfriend, because of the cliffhanger at the end. Monica did not disappoint!


This book was just as engrossing as the first. I think what I liked the most about it is that the author is telling a story and she is a great story teller. In both books, I was pleasantly surprised by how steamy and adult feeling the romance was between Drew Callahan and Fable Maguire. Boy, do these two have chemistry!

In this book, Drew's secret becomes too much for him and he starts to self destruct. One of the ways he does this is by leaving Fable behind because he doesn't think he deserves her. His football career is in the tank, he failed some classes, and now he is even more of a recluse than before. The one positive in his life is that he has decided he needs help, and has started therapy with what appears to be a great therapist.

Fable tried to reach out to Drew several times, and he ignored her calls and texts. She is devastated and angry. After several months she decides it is time to move on, and to try to start living her life again. Around this time a handsome stranger comes into her bar and propositions her; not the way you think! He has a new upscale restaurant and thinks she would be perfect for the job. She hesitantly takes the job and gets way more than she bargained for! It seems this path may lead in a certain direction, but it is not what we think! You will have to read it to see what happens!

During a 21st birthday party for a local football player hosted at the new restaurant, Fable is assigned to work the party. She worries that Drew will be there, and her fear is confirmed when she sees him there. One of the players is giving her a hard time and Drew steps in to defend her. Afterward, things get heated between them and Drew begs her for another chance.

They decide to make a go of it and all kinds of crazy events happen during their reconnection. Fable's mom goes off the deep end, Drew's dad wants to divorce his step-mom, Drew's therapist thinks he should tell his dad his secret, and there is trouble at Fable's work. It has a great ending with some turns I didn't expect. A sweet, but truly messy, love! I really liked this book, and she has one more coming!


Reviewed by Kelli

4.5 STARS

Friday, July 26, 2013

Cover Reveal - Saving Margaret by Krystal Shannan

Cover Reveal and Book Release!


Saving Margaret
Vegas Mates, #2
by Krystal Shannan
Available Now!

About the Book:

Successful, but lonely, Margaret Taylor finds her mate in the body of a man she least expects it in. A bear! Her human half tries to reason her way out of the match, but her wolf is through with her excuses. Crossing the species line isn’t unheard of, but it’s not often done.

Try as she might to avoid him, fate makes sure the big grizzly bear is nearby at all times. But, will his presence be enough to protect her from the evil stalking her?

The power of the magick between them can’t be avoided. But, Scott O’Hearn thinks the beautiful Taylor wolf is doing a fine job of just that —avoiding him. He can’t help he’s a bear shifter and he’s determined to convince her it doesn’t matter. She is his mate and he’s waited over a century to find her. 


Will he convince Margaret she’s his true match before it’s too late?

Paranormal / Witches/ Shifter Romance 

Vegas Mates in series order… 
CHASING SAM (novella) 
SAVING MARGARET (novel)

Read our reviews for other books by Krystal Shannan:

Open House
Finding Hope

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!



Krystal Shannan

Magick, Myth, and Legendary Romance.

Connect with the Author!
Facebook Friend & Fan

Featured Author Interview - Penelope Ward

Featured Author
Penelope Ward

Penelope Ward is the author of Gemini, a debut novel with a huge twist! We loved Gemini, so we're very excited to chat with Penelope about her book and any new projects she might be up to!

About the Author

Penelope Ward grew up in Boston with five older brothers. She currently resides in Rhode Island with her husband and two children, a boy and a girl. Penelope lives for books, coffee, and hanging out with her friends and family on the weekends.

Interview

MBB: We're excited to discuss your book, and anything else you would like to share! Please tell us how long you have been writing, and what inspires you.

PW: Writing was always one of my strong points from a very young age. Over the years, I would write poems for friends and writing is a big part of my day job in customer relations. However, I never delved into writing romantic fiction until I developed a strong love of reading as a form of escapism in my mid-thirties. I would read a book and say ‘I bet I could write a story like this.’ Then, one day I started writing exactly the type of book I love to read; one with a combination of romance, steam, angst and mystery. I would read Gemini chapter by chapter over the phone to my best friend who lives in England and would leave her dying for more after each skype session…so she was my test reviewer.

MBB: What approach did you take to begin writing your book?

PW: The idea for the storyline came to me in the middle of the night. Then, I started building an outline of the major points/events in the story. I knew from the beginning how the twist would play into the storyline and how the story would end. The writing and specific dialog actually tends to happen more spontaneously as I go along.

MBB: Please tell us a little about the plot and characters!

PW: Gemini is the story of a woman, Allison, who has lost her mother, is virtually alone and looking for a purpose in life. She is immediately captivated by a handsome stranger who makes her feel alive again in just the first meeting after he walks into the diner where she works. She believes their meetings thereafter are by chance, but in fact, Cedric, the male lead, had sought out to find her from the very first encounter and is hiding a major secret from Allison. But even aside from the twist in the story (when the secret is revealed), the romance between them and the growth of the characters holds its own as a story in itself. Readers will be in store for lots of twists and turns, but are rewarded for the ride with a satisfying ending.

MBB: We loved the twists and turns! Was there any special research or preparation required?

PW: I stuck with what I knew in this book, so not a lot of research at all. The story was based in Boston, where I am from. Cedric was a talent agent in an industry I used to work in. And the side characters with autism were included because I have an autistic 9-year-old daughter on whom the character Callie was based. I am doing more research for my second book than I did for Gemini.

MBB: What do you like most about the contemporary genre?

PW: As I alluded to above, a lot of the contemporary books combine elements like love, sex, angst and mystery into one storyline. I enjoy books that toy with my emotions, that make me wait for the sexual connection and that make me scream back at the characters. If I cannot put a book down, I know it’s a good book and that's the type of book I strive to write.

MBB: What advice would you give to other writers who are just starting out?

PW: I would say not to be discouraged by the fact that you have never written before. So many of the most popular books are from first time writers these days. If you are happy with your work, if you would read it, then chances are others will too. I was amazed at the amount of people around the world I was able to reach with this book after I hit the ‘upload’ button.

MBB: What are your plans for future projects?

PW: I am currently about a third of the way finished with my second novel. I plan to release it in the fall. It is a standalone companion novel to Gemini, since the main male character in the second book (Jake) emerged as a side character late in the Gemini storyline. The main characters from Gemini will make brief cameos as well, but this is an entirely different story. This novel finds Jake a bit older than we left him in Gemini with his own romantic suspense storyline.

MBB: That sounds exciting! If you were stranded on a deserted island with just one book what would it be and why?

PW: I think my favorite book is “Take This Regret”, by A.L. Jackson. It’s just a story that really resonated with me and I felt really connected to the characters. It was a great emotional read. There was one scene that takes place in a supermarket that really tugged at my heartstrings and people who read the book will know exactly what I mean.

MBB: Is there anything else you would like to add?

PW: I am grateful for the opportunity to have been interviewed on Moonrise Book Blog and hope that your followers send me feedback if they read Gemini. I look forward to hearing from them! Thanks again!

Thank you, Penelope, for stopping by Moonrise Book Blog, and for giving us a glimpse into your fascinating world! We enjoyed your book, and can’t wait for the next one to come out in the fall!

Check out our review for Gemini by clicking here!


Gemini
Available on Amazon

Connect with Penelope Ward 
WebsiteFacebook
Goodreads


Interviewed by Stephanie

Cover Reveal - Jake Undone by Penelope Ward

~ Cover Reveal ~
Jake Undone 



by Penelope Ward 
Expected Release Date: 
October 2013 


About the Book:

Nina Kennedy was alive…but not living…until she met him.

Planes, trains, heights…you name it, Nina was afraid of it and led a sheltered life ruled by irrational fears and phobias. When she moves to Brooklyn for nursing school, that life is turned upside down, as she develops an intense but unwanted attraction to her gorgeous roommate, who’s pierced, tattooed and just happens to be the smartest person she’s ever met.

Behind Jake Green’s rough exterior and devilish smile is a heart of gold. He makes it his mission to change Nina’s outlook on life. When he agrees to tutor her, they forge a bet and the stakes are high as Jake forces Nina to face her demons. He just wasn’t expecting to fall hard for her in the process.

What Nina doesn’t realize, is that Jake has been living his own private hell. Once he drops a bombshell, will their love survive it?

Told in two parts from both Nina and Jake’s points of view, Jake Undone is a standalone story and a companion to the novel, Gemini. 

About the Author:

Penelope Ward grew up in Boston with five older brothers. She currently resides in Rhode Island with her husband and two children, a boy and a girl. Penelope lives for books, coffee, and hanging out with her friends and family on the weekends.

Penelope Ward

Connect with the Author

You can read our review for Penelope's first book, Gemini, by clicking here!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Book Review - Cloaked in Fur by T.F. Walsh

Cloaked in Fur
by T.F. Walsh
Published 2013
256 Pages

Daciana loves living in the city. She has her own apartment, a great job as an animal behaviorist, and a gorgeous, attentive boyfriend who works as an inspector with the local police force. On the surface, Daciana’s life appears ideal... but that’s only half the story. When the full moon reaches its peak, and looms large over the Carpathian Mountains of Romania, Daciana transforms into a moonwulf. And as part of an ancient line of shapeshifting wolves, Daciana is expected to live with her pack family, to mate within the pack, and to maintain the clandestine life of her elders, thus ensuring the pack maintains its secrecy from humans. 

Not one to follow orders or tradition, Daciana has fallen in love with a human, causing upheaval within her pack at a time when unity is more important than ever. With a new pack encroaching on their territory, a rogue wolf creating a panic, and a magical elixir that could change the course of everything, Daciana is torn between two worlds. Does she stay with her pack family, or risk it all for the man she loves?

There were so many aspects of this book that I enjoyed, it’s hard to know where to start! It’s well written, perfectly paced, and filled with enchanting characters. Daciana is a strong, thoughtful female character with plenty of flaws and angst. We get to know the range of her emotions and personality characteristics in a realistic and believable way. Connell is a gorgeous and lovable character, with his own set of flaws and quirks. He struggles with his relationship with Daciana, and on more than one occasion has clearly been to the bar to ease his woes! We get to know Sandulf, Enre, and others--all important, and all with meaningful contributions to this story. A great read! I really enjoyed this book, and look forward to the next installment. 


Available on Amazon

Reviewed by Stephanie 

5 STARS


Book Review - One Week Girlfriend by Monica Murphy

One Week Girlfriend (Drew + Fable, #1)
by Monica Murphy
Published 2013

289 Pages

So I bought this one on special not really knowing what to expect. When I started reading I discovered it was New Adult, which is not my favorite genre, but I really liked the characters  so I kept reading. I'm glad I did. Wow, loved this one! This book could have been run of the mill average very easily because it is a story that has been told a million times. Poor girl meets rich guy, he falls for her and yada yada. However, this book has twists and turns, some you can just see coming, and others you couldn't have predicted. I fell in love with both the girl and boy in this story, almost equally.

Drew Callahan has a secret. He is a football legend in this college town and has everything going for him on the outside. Golden, beautiful boy, but he is damaged beyond what anyone could imagine. He offers Fable Maguire, a 20 year old local waitress and known by several of his teammates (if you know what I mean) a lot of cash to be his pretend girlfriend for a weeklong visit to his parents home in Carmel. Fable needs the cash! She takes care of her teenage brother because her mom is too drunk to care. She knows the rumors Drew has probably heard are what caused him to proposition her, but she doesn't care. This money will put her months ahead and she needs it.

Somewhere along the way, Drew lets her in and starts to need her. It is hard to tell who is rescuing who. Can they survive their past and move toward a future? Well, you won't find out in this one! It is a cliff hanger, but fear not the second book of the series is out. And I am well into the second half ... don't get ahead of yourself. Read the first one, then I will let you know about the second. Great Read!

Reviewed by Kelli


4.5 STARS

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Featured Author Interview - T.F. Walsh

Featured Author

T.F. Walsh

T.F. Walsh is the author of Cloaked in Fur, a book that we love! You can read our review by clicking here. Having written such an amazing debut novel, we just had to hear more about the author, her history, and what she might have in store for us for future projects! 

About the Author

T.F. Walsh emigrated from Romania to Australia at the age of eight and now lives in a regional city south of Sydney with her husband. Growing up hearing dark fairytales, she's always had a passion for reading and writing horror, paranormal romance, urban fantasy and young adult stories. 

She balances all the dark with light fluffy stuff like baking and traveling.

Interview

MBB: We’re so excited to discuss your book, and anything else you would like to share!

TFW: Hi Stephanie, thank you for having me today on your blog. I’m very excited to be here.

MBB: We're excited to have you! You write beautifully! It’s hard to believe Cloaked in Fur is your first book! Please share with us how long you’ve been writing, and what inspires you!

TFW: I’ve been dabbling in writing ever since I was young. I remember scribbling short stories on the inside flap of books, and then I signed them. I was practicing way back then it seemed. But it was only several years ago that I started to take writing seriously. My inspiration is greatly influenced by two things. One, my dad is a wonderful poet and author, who is very well known in Romania, and his passion for books and stories has obviously trickled down to me. Second, I have always loved horror movies, especially anything with monsters. And even today when I sit down and plot a novel, I can’t help but add dark elements and monsters in my stories.

MBB: That is a fascinating history! What approach did you take to begin writing your book?

TFW: Werewolves have always fascinated me from the perspective of their dual personality. No matter how much control someone has over his or her wants and needs, once the werewolf takes over, all hell breaks loose. And to a greater extent, that makes shifters very alluring creatures. Who wouldn’t love to let go of all constraints? So, with that in mind along with wanting to explore the idea of how far someone was willing to go to save true love, Cloaked in Fur was born.

MBB: Please tell us a little about Cloaked in Fur (we would also love to hear any behind the scenes tidbits you’re willing to share)!

TFW: As a moonwulf, Daciana never expected to fall in love with a human. Hell, she never imagined that she’d abandon her pack, endanger everyone around her, and break the worst rule possible. But she did.

A rogue werewolf is killing Daciana’s friends, and she sets on capturing the creature. She’ll do whatever it takes to stop the beast. The police and her boyfriend, Inspector Connell Lonescu, are starting to question her involvement in the murders, which is endangering the pack’s secret existence. But when the pack alpha kidnaps Connell, revealing the awful truth about the creature and its connection to the pack, Daciana must choose between saving the man she loves and saving her pack family from certain death.

Behind the scenes tidbit:

As I wrote Cloaked in Fur, I was becoming infatuated with Enre, one of Daciana’s ex-lovers. He is so raw in his approach to life and na├»ve at the same time, which is why he’ll be playing a much bigger part in book 2.

MBB: Enre is a great character! I’m excited he will play a bigger part in book 2. Was there any special research or preparation required to write Cloaked in Fur?

TFW: I actually watched every wolf documentary I could get my hands on to study how packs worked, their hierarchy, mannerisms, and even what different howls meant. For the setting of Brasov in Romania, I researched the area, watched youtube tourist videos of the streets, and lucky for me, I have a good friend from Brasov who helped me with some of the finer details. And to understand how wolves and bears attacked, I spent hours reading reports of unusual human attacks. By the end, I felt like a bit of wolf expert.

MBB: That must be how you were able to write such descriptive scenes. What do you like most about the paranormal romance genre, in general?

TFW: I enjoy writing about all sorts of paranormal shifters and creatures to explore what makes them tick. Everyone has a reason for what they do, and in my stories, the characters’ past always come with heavy baggage. Nothing is ever straightforward. Now throw in a handful of romance, and you’ve got major complications.

MBB: What advice do you have for other writers who are just starting out?

TFW: Join a writers group or find critique partners, and don’t be afraid to share your writing. That’s the only way you’ll improve as a writer.

MBB: So, it sounds like there will be a follow up book! Any other projects planned?

TFW: Absolutely. A sequel to Cloaked in Fur is currently in the works. Daciana, her pack and Connell are facing a number of new foes, and the tension is higher. I can’t wait to share it with everyone.

I’m also working on another project. A young adult fantasy novel, which is made up of three parts about six characters. It is set in a world filled with witches, steampunk monsters and magic, and at the heart of the story, there’s the struggle to find love. I’m so excited about this story. More to come soon.

MBB: If you were stranded on a deserted island with all the published works of just one author, what author would it be? Please elaborate!

TFW: That’s so hard. It’s a toss between Richard Laymon and Stephen King. I’m going to go with Richard Laymon. He has a lot of great books filled with suspense and horror fiction. That’ll keep me occupied on the island, though I might be a bit scared at night.

MBB: Scared, but entertained! Is there anything else you would like to add?

TFW: I loved writing Cloaked in Fur and incorporating snippets of Romanian culture and tradition. It’s a special book to me because it helped me grow as a writer and also led me to meet the wonderful group of writers who I now call close friends.

Thank you to T.F. Walsh for giving us a personal look into her history and how her first book came to be! We love her writing style, and can’t wait to hear more from her in the future!



Cloaked in Fur by T.F. Walsh
Available on Amazon!

Connect with the Author

Interviewed by Stephanie

Cover Reveal - Cloaked in Fur by T.F. Walsh

Cover Reveal and Book Release!

Cloaked in Fur

by T.F. Walsh 
Now Available!

About the Book: 

As a moonwulf, Daciana never expected to fall in love with a human. Hell, she never imagined that she’d abandon her pack, endanger everyone around her, and break the worst rule possible. But she did.

A rogue werewolf is killing Daciana’s friends, and she sets on capturing the creature. She’ll do whatever it takes to stop the beast. The police and her boyfriend, Inspector Connell Lonescu, are starting to question her involvement in the murders, which is endangering the pack’s secret existence. But when the pack alpha kidnaps Connell, revealing the awful truth about the creature and its connection to the pack, Daciana must choose between saving the man she loves and saving her pack family from certain death.

Read our review!
Cloaked in Fur

About the Author:


T.F. Walsh emigrated from Romania to Australia at the age of eight and now lives in a regional city south of Sydney with her husband. Growing up hearing dark fairytales, she’s always had a passion for reading and writing horror, paranormal romance, urban fantasy and young adult stories. She balances all the dark with light fluffy stuff like baking and traveling.



T.F. Walsh
Connect with the Author

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Book Review - Painted Lines by Brei Betzold


Painted Lines

by Brei Betzold
Published 2013
322 Pages

Did this book grip me? Did I read obsessively? Did I have a hard time putting it down? Absolutely, all of the above! But to say that I liked this book would be an understatement. I was taken, removed from the day, and put into a nightmarish world of pain and rape ... and love, but not in a traditional sense. 

Harper Lee, also known as Scout, is a biker girl who knows bikes and loves to paint them. She is broken in mind, soul and body, but not in spirit. Scout’s spirit wants to live. Her dream is to own her own shop, to build beautiful bikes, and to be with the people she loves and who love her. Since the incident that broke her, her brother and other men that she considers her brothers surround her. Her every move and every decision has become a group one. Until now, she has been okay with it, but all of a sudden she wants her own thoughts, her own shop, her own life, and her own love. She wants to decide when she comes and goes and not have to answer to the overprotective men in her life.

To achieve this, Scout decides to enter a competition, a reality show, where the prize is $500,000. But when she shows up to the first meeting she comes face to face with the person that broke her years ago. He is forced to leave the competition because of a restraining order, but she is still affected and his team will still be able to compete. Lack of sleep, nightmares, and current subtle attacks keep her on edge, but Scout is determined to persevere and to win the competition. She is not letting this one chance get by her.

From the opposing team Scout meets Thayne Scott. He can't understand why she cannot let bygones be bygones, and she is not about to explain it to him. He overreacts, apologizes, and asks to call a truce by getting some coffee. From coffee a tentative friendship develops and they both want more. Scout sneaks around behind everyone's back to spend time with Thayne. He is the first person who treats her like a normal person and she likes it. Actually she cannot get enough of it and decides she is ready to move on in life, independent of everyone else.

This is Scout’s story of how she survived tragedy, and eventually healed enough to find love. It is touching, moving, and gut-wrenching all at the same time. It is a deep read and not for everyone. Well written, I could not put this book down!

Reviewed by Kelli
★★★
4 STARS 

Cover Reveal - Finding Hope and Chasing Sam by Krystal Shannan

Two gorgeous new covers! 

Finding Hope and Chasing Sam


by Krystal Shannan

Read our reviews for these great new books!
 Finding Hope (Pool of Souls, book #2)
Chasing Sam (Vegas Mates, book #1)

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!


check out Krystal Shannan's other books 
on her official website!

Book Review - Come Alive by Karina Halle


Come Alive (Experiment in Terror, #7)
by Karina Halle
Published 2013
438 Pages

This book was action packed! A great read, I enjoyed getting back to the business of ghost hunting with Dex Foray and Perry Palomino, amateur ghost hunters, in this seventh installment of the Experiment in Terror series. 

Dex and Perry embark on a ghost hunting expedition to investigate a haunted house in New Orleans. Maximus rejoins the cast, and plays an active role in this installment as the newest member of Dex and Perry’s Internet show.

Written from Dex’s point of view, we are privy to Dex’s true thoughts and feelings about Perry, most of which revolve around his appreciation for her physical attributes! But Dex is a little too sentimental, which comes across as contrived. Still, these characters are so loveable that it’s easy to forgive some whimsy in the relationship department.

In New Orleans, Dex and Perry’s haunted house investigation turns out to be much more complex. We meet a voodoo priestess, flesh-eating zombies, and discover that Dex and Perry have been deceived by someone close to them. In the business of ghosts and zombies, you need to be careful about who you trust!

An entirely new storyline opens up surrounding Maximus that involves even more paranormal oddities and otherworldly creatures. This could be interesting! I enjoyed Dex’s point of view, but missed Perry’s input. Still, this is a great read, and I’m excited about some unexpected developments! You'll have to read the book to find out.  

Reviewed by Stephanie
★★★
4 STARS

Book Review - Lick by Kylie Scott


Lick (Stage Dive, #1)
by Kylie Scott
Published 2013
303 Pages

I LOVED this book! A great start, it grabbed me from the beginning and never lost me! Evelyn Thomas wakes up feeling like she was hit by a bus. And in a sense, she was—a bus named Las Vegas! Ha! Barely able to lift her head, and still slightly nauseous from the smell of vomit surrounding her, Evelyn looks up to see the most gorgeous, half naked, tattooed man on the planet, smirking at her adoringly! She has absolutely no recollection of the previous night, where she is now, or how she got there. Now, she has a beautiful man staring at her, a humongous diamond on her finger, and a tattoo on her backside. And this is only the beginning!

David Ferris, guitarist for the hugely popular rock band, Stage Dive, remembers everything that happened the night before. He thought he had met the woman of his dreams, and is embarrassed and angry when he discovers she doesn’t even remember his name! And now that the media has gotten tipped off about the marriage, it will be tough to stay out of the spotlight. David offers to help, until they can get their marriage annulled. Instead, his handlers offer Evelyn a large sum of money to just go away. She is insulted and accused of trying to hold things up when she tries to get rid of the settlement clause in the agreement. Fed up with the bullies, she runs out of the house and into the black Jeep of Malcolm, the infamous drummer of Stage Dive.

Whisked away by Malcolm to save her from the insanity, they meet up with David and decide they need to get away until things settle down. David tells Evelyn that they will deal with the divorce after the weekend. Can you see where this is going? Over the weekend, the original feelings resurface for Evelyn, and the chemistry is off the charts! But could it ever work out for these two? They are from such different worlds. Evelyn is David’s little chance at normal. But as a famous rock star, normal may not be possible. 

I loved the characters and cannot wait for another book in this series! It is going to be a series right? Let's get to know Malcolm next! A great read! 

Reviewed by Kelli
5 STARS

Monday, July 15, 2013

Book Review - Branded by Keary Taylor


Branded (Fall of Angels, #1)
by Keary Taylor
Published 2010
376 Pages

This is the story of Jessica, a young woman estranged from her parents, who suffers from excruciating night terrors that have all but taken over her life. Jessica doesn’t sleep. Well, she tries her best not to, but after several days she does succumb to sleep, only to be met with the same nightmares she has had her entire life—nightmares of the trials of souls. 

In the nightmares, Jessica waits in a cell for the angel who never speaks. Hooded, she is led to walk the gauntlet, with angels on both sides of the walk, waiting to hear whether the souls for which she stands trial will go up to the heavens or down to the abysmal, dark pit below her feet. Either way, it is a grueling process, and one that takes its toll on Jessica each and every day in the conscious world. She is branded on the back of the neck, and when she awakens the brand is still there, along with other markings and signs that there may be more to these nightmares that just night terrors. Especially now that the patterns are changing, and the fragile veil that has protected her in the past appears to be thinning. Feathers outside her bedroom window, and a stranger with otherworldly good looks lead us to believe that something is amiss.

We meet Cole, tall, dark, and handsome, and instantly obsessed with Jessica. He is trouble from the start, with a suspicious nature and a mysterious history. We also meet Alex, a handsome and attentive young man with no family, as his parents are deceased and he has just lost his grandmother. Cole and Alex compete for Jessica’s attention. But beyond this little bubble surrounding Jessica, few characters pop up, and the only one that has some real depth meets a tragic demise. 

I really wanted to like this book! I wanted to know more about why Jessica was going to trial for the souls of others—the true meaning, on a deeper level. So, although this story had potential, it missed the mark. With the underdeveloped characters and the weak arc, I found myself skimming through pages. Three stars is a generous rating for this book that, despite the feathers and wings, never got liftoff.  

Reviewed by Stephanie
3 STARS

Book Review - Defiance by Stephanie Tyler


Defiance
by Stephanie Tyler
Published 2012
318 Pages

Motorcycle gang? Dystopia and a world of semi-darkness? A male-dominated world? Profanity? Okay, you have my interest! I must admit, I am a sucker for a good bad-boy-biker read, and Stephanie did not disappoint! Very edgy moments, with plenty of shock factor, I really enjoyed this mess of a world and get the feeling we have a series coming from this one as well. So what is it about? 

Tru Tennyson was the daughter of one of the big guys, a sergeant at arms Enforcer, for the Defiance motorcycle club. Although a male dominated club, Tru's father took his dominance one violent step too far, causing the young Tru to flee the club looking for safety and a life of her own. After being on her own for three years, and surviving just fine thank you very much, Tru is forced to go seek the protection of the gang, because a massive meteor storm struck earth causing environmental destruction, killing many, and plunging the world into darkness and anarchy. This created a world of outlaws and criminals, placing motorcycle clubs like Defiance at the top of the food chain. Being made up of mostly ex-military doomsday fanatics, Defiance had made a completely functional and stocked underground world. 

When Tru returns, she seeks shelter with the Kill Devils, a rival motorcycle club, and stays with them for over a year. The only reason she is not forced to bond with the head of the Kill Devils is because her father is still alive. When her father dies, the leader, Padraic, seeks to claim her. She refuses and is returned to Defiance, although there are consequences for her refusal. The current Enforcer of Defiance, Casper, cannot believe that Tru is coming back to Defiance, especially after she went to Padraic instead of him when she needed help. Casper is huge, covered in scars, and exudes violence. Tru coming back has the potential to mess up his long sought after plans, and he cannot let this happen for the sake of the club. The head of Defiance will force Tru to bond to a member to protect her from the consequences of refusing Padraic. 

All sorts of crazy situations occur between Casper and Tru, and eventually all the Defiance members have to pick their side. 
Too many twists and turns to describe. It took some time to get to know the history and culture of the motorcycle club, but I loved the journey. I cannot wait for more in this series. (Please be a series. Fingers crossed!)

Reviewed by Kelli

4 STARS

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Book Review - Covet by J.R. Ward


Covet (Fallen Angels, #1)
by J.R. Ward
Published 2009
497 Pages

Covet is the first book in the Fallen Angels series. We are introduced to Jim Heron, a rough and rugged soul with a black ops military background, who finds himself caught between two worlds, and part of a deadly game as old as time: the battle against good and evil. As the newest fallen angel, Jim has the ability to influence seven souls in the most objective way. You see, Jim is a wild card, and his influence could go either way. But the games have just begun!

This book introduces us to demons, in the form of beautiful creatures; and angels, with plenty of quirks. With so much at stake, Jim is being wooed from all angles, and in unexpected ways. But will he trust the right sources? As a new angel, he still has a long way to go! And the clock is ticking…

I really liked this book! I know it’s not the same as the Black Dagger Brotherhood, and I really only started reading it because I was missing the brothers. But this book had its own merit, and I enjoyed exploring the world Jim Heron was just thrust into. There were some slow parts, but I will definitely keep reading the series to see which way the games will go.

Reviewed by Stephanie
3.5 STARS

Book Review - Crave by J.R. Ward


Crave (Fallen Angels, #2)
by J.R. Ward
Published 2010
481 Pages

Crave offers a meaningful contribution to the Fallen Angels series, as we learn more about Jim Heron’s history as a former black ops, and the challenges that have lead to his jaded ways. 

Now a fallen angel, Jim is never advised as to which souls must be saved in this deadly game between good and evil. And so, as the second round begins, Jim is immediately confronted with a conundrum: to which soul does he focus his attention? He meets the lovely Grier Childe, a public defender with a complicated family history; and Isaac Rothe, another former black ops, and a deadly military force from Jim’s past. With a demon that presents in the form of a beautiful temptress angling for a shot at winning this game, Jim has the arduous task of seeing it through, and ultimately saving souls of those who have otherwise lost their way. 

But whom do you trust when trust issues are inherently interwoven into your very being? Nothing is the way it seems. And with issues of love, friendship, and family in the mix Jim has a formidable challenge before him.

I enjoyed this book, and want to see how the game plays out! There are some rather creepy parts within the demon realm, but the angels are fun and quirky, and overall, I like the plot! You can’t go wrong with J.R. Ward’s ability to create a world and bring it to life. A great book!

Reviewed by Stephanie
4 STARS

Book Review - Envy by J.R. Ward


Envy (Fallen Angels, #3)
by J.R. Ward
Published 2011
480 Pages

In this book, we meet Thomas “Veck” DelVecchio, a police detective, who has struggled his entire life with issues surrounding his identity. Veck is the son of a serial killer, and when those around him begin to question his stability, we are privy to the undercurrents that are influencing his thoughts, behavior, and actions. And although the fallen angel, Jim Heron, has Veck in his sights, he ruminates over the murder of a young girl—a picture he cannot seem to get out of his mind. 

Will the intoxicated, motorcycle riding, sex indulging fallen angels be able to keep Jim on track? He isn't particularly fond of his new role. But all hope is not lost… yet.

I wasn’t as enthralled with this story. Still, it had its moments, and as the series develops we’re getting a better understanding of Jim and the other angels on Earth. I enjoyed the brief moments with the angels in charge—their world is described so vividly, that I would love a series just about them! Overall, a good read!

Reviewed by Stephanie
3.5 STARS

Book Review - Rapture by J.R. Ward


Rapture (Fallen Angels, #4)
by J.R. Ward
Published 2012
513 Pages

Mels Carmichael, a local journalist, is driving to work one day when a man falls from a fence surrounding the local cemetery and lands right in front of her car. 

Injured but alive, the man is taken to the local hospital where Mels visits him, feeling drawn to the poor soul suffering from amnesia. He cannot recall anything from his past. The only lead he has is the name on the gravestone upon which he awoke before the accident—Jim Heron.

Jim is confronted with his past in a very personal way, as the challenges continue to build, and the stakes are raised in the battle against good and evil. 

Jim is perplexed with the man who has no memory—a man with a past most intricately intertwined with his own. But can he help save a soul that doesn’t want to be saved? And is it worth the cost to Jim?

So far, this was my favorite book in the Fallen Angels series. A really great read! 

Reviewed by Stephanie
4.5 STARS

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Book Review - Beauty and the Bad Boy


Beauty and the Bad Boy (Bad Boy, #1)
by Scarlett Dupree
Published 2013

242 Pages

Just finished this one. Loved it! The story is about two broken souls, from opposite sides of town, who have suffered many losses. Dakota Demonte is a lovable, strong, and resilient female character. She can take care of herself, and takes pride in that fact. Jake Rider is drawn to Dakota, and simply cannot stay away from her! She is looking for a walk on the wild side; he cannot resist her. It is not a pretty or perfect pairing, but it is one wild ride!

The heroine, Dakota, finds herself in the male-dominated world of Jake’s motorcycle gang, where she fights to hold her own—literally! She can shoot, fight, and has the language skills to rival any sailor! Even though he doesn't want to put his alpha in the back seat when she asks him to, he does so, because the alternative is a life without her.

I swooned over Jake's obvious need to protect Dakota, and admired the struggles he chose to fight, in order to give her the independence she needed and demanded. This is a super steamy look at the lives of those in a motorcycle club. I would definitely recommend it to those who love some bad-boy, but also want his counterpart to be a chick who can take care of business!


Reviewed by Kelli

★★★
4 STARS

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Cover Reveal - Open House by Krystal Shannan

~ Cover Reveal ~
The Pool of Souls series is getting 
a snazzy new look!

Open House
Pool of Souls, book #1
by Krystal Shannan

About the Book:

Rebecca Carol and Robert Corvin missed their chance to fall in love when Ares, God of War, took control of Robert's career. Rebecca's and Robert's souls have naturally pulled them back together for a second chance, but... How far will Ares go to get his own way?

Intrinsically woven into the fabric of human existence, Aphrodite, Titan Goddess of Love and Passion, dedicates herself to matching soul mates.

Will divine influence create another perfect match or will it tear them apart forever?

Available Now!

Paranormal / Fantasy Romance

The Pool of Souls, in series order

OPEN HOUSE (novella)
FINDING HOPE

We love the new Open House book cover. It fits perfectly with the story! And the lovely Krystal Shannan has included a quote from my book review. Thank you, Krystal! 

Read my review for Open House by clicking here!

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!

Krystal Shannan 

~ Magick, Adventure, and Romance ~

Connect with the Author!


Featured Author Interview - Krystal Shannan

Featured Author
Krystal Shannan

Krystal Shannan is the author of the Pool of Souls series, which we love! We have read and reviewed the first two books, Open House and Finding Hope, and can't wait for the next installment! She is also the author of Chasing Sam and A Very Russian Christmas


Book Reviews:

Open House (Pool of Souls #1)
Finding Hope (Pool of Souls #2)


Interview:

Krystal was kind enough to join us for an interview! We are excited to hear more about her fantastic Pool of Souls series, what motivates her to write, and any other projects she may be up to!

MBB: How and when did you decide to become a writer?

KS: I've been writing as long as I can remember. I don't think 'not writing' was ever a choice, but I didn't consider publishing anything until last year. The stories have always been there, even in elementary I would write all the time. As I grew, they did too. 

MBB: What was the approach you took to begin the process of writing your series, Pool of Souls?

KS: Well... I sorta came up with the idea in the car on the way to work one morning. It started off as just the contemporary story between Robert and Rebecca, but when I sat down to start writing, Aphrodite appeared and then Ares and they took it and ran! Now, I can't imagine it without them and I'm so excited for where they are taking me next. 

MBB: I can only imagine! Was there any special research or preparation required?

KS: Not a lot. I've read and studied Greek mythology for years. I love ancient cultures. I'm sure I would make a great archeologist, lol. 

MBB: Would you mind sharing a little about the book or series (any tidbits that we won't find in the books are welcomed, too)?

KS: Hmmm...well... In my mind, Aphrodite loves fashion, but she's at a total loss when it comes to technology and social media. The arc of the series will follow Aphrodite and Ares's relationship and trials. A lot of things are still being planned, so even I don't know everything yet! 

MBB: What do you like most about the paranormal genre?

KS: I adore the ability to make my fantasy reality! With paranormal anything is possible. 


MBB: What are your plans for future projects?

KS: I have plans for more in the Pool of Souls Series, Vegas Mates Series, and I have a Faerie Tale Series in the works to launch later this year. 

MBB: If you were stuck on a deserted island with just one book what would it be and why?

KS: I could never choose, LOL. But Acheron by Sherrilyn Kenyon is one of my all time favorites. Dark, dangerous, sexy, and wrapped in mythology.


MBB: What advice would you give to other writers who are just starting out?

KS: A lot of people will tell you to write, write, write. While that is very important, if you really want to succeed in this business, you need a plan. A plan to market yourself and who you are to your readers. This is a business. It's worth it, if it's what you want to do, but you must be willing to invest time and money. Make sure your product is good and make sure you present it in a professional way. 


MBB: That is great advice! Is there anything else you would like to add?

KS: Just a huge thank you!

MBB: Thank you, Krystal! We love the Pool of Souls series, and can’t wait for the next book!



Connect With the Author!

Interviewed by Stephanie