Friday, August 30, 2013

Book Review - Pierced by J.C. Mells


Pierced (Pierced, #1)
by J. C. Mells
Published 2013

576 Pages

I cannot believe I waited so long to review this book. It moved me, it kept me on the edge of my seat, and it shocked me. But I could not put it down! And I'm so glad because (and you must trust me on this) you will love it to the end! And despite the cliffhanger, it ended in such a good way! I cannot wait until the next book comes out! If you're intrigued, you should be. This is an amazing, over-the-top good read!

Pierce's looks keep everyone away, which is how she likes it. Coming from an unimaginable place, she is on the run with a child that she has sworn to protect. You might be wondering what she is running from. Well, they escaped a vampire compound where they both lived for almost a decade. But here is the catch: They are not on the run from the vampires. No, they are on the run from the vampire in-training that was in charge of the compound. And not for the reasons you might think! I was completely blindsided by the reveal, and it was so well executed, that I just want to gush about it! But you will have to read it for yourself!

To make everything even more complicated, Pierce has severe social disorders that she tries to play off, which is a difficult endeavor when you have two people residing with you ... in your own head. Then, just when you think it can't go in any more directions, it does! This is a unique book with plenty of surprises! Five stars, no question! A must read!


Available on Amazon

Reviewed by Kelli

5 STARS

Book Review - Fated by Rebecca Zanetti


Fated (Dark Protectors, #1)
by Rebecca Zanetti
Published 2011

337 Pages

Vampires, empaths, and shifters, oh my! Yes ladies, I found another paranormal romance series that somehow escaped my notice over the last few years, and boy am I glad! 


Fated is a super steamy read! And there are other published books in the series, so I don't have to wait! You know that patience is not one of my virtues! I really liked the parallel worlds created in this book. It's easy to follow, without too many details or stretches. 

We meet Cara Paulsen, a single mother and scientist, who is happy with her quiet world. Cara is an empath, and she has a daughter who can see the future and dream-walk. Having been raised by an alcoholic, religious zealot (who said her gifts made her evil), Cara was beaten as a child. As a result, she has spent her entire life hiding her gifts, and has taught her daughter to do the same. 

One night a huge man breaks into Cara's home, and tells her he is there to rescue her daughter and her from evil vampires, called Kurjans. He is Talen Kayrs, the military leader for the good vampires. And as the story unfolds, Talen's interest in Cara deepens beyond that of rescuer. But she wants nothing to do with him... or does she? 

This is a super steamy and enjoyable read! I am looking forward to the entire series, and have already started the next book!

Reviewed by Kelli


4 STARS

Monday, August 26, 2013

Event - Ebook Giveaway: Win one of four contemporary and paranormal romance e-book bundles!



In celebration of Moonrise Book Blog reaching 10,000 views, we are giving away four e-book bundles, packed full of paranormal romance and contemporary bliss! We have read and reviewed books from all the authors included, so this is not a random list. Instead, these bundles were hand-picked to include some of our favorite books and authors from 2013!

Giveaway starts on Monday, August 26th! See below for details, read about the books included, then scroll down to enterPlease leave a comment telling us which bundle you're interested in, and we will do our best to accommodate winners! Note that you must be 18 years or older to enter. Good luck! And a special thank you to the authors for their generous contribution! Please like their Facebook pages to show your support!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Chasing Sam (Vegas Mates #1) 
by Krystal Shannan


Published February 5, 2013
60 pages

Samantha Demakis doesn’t want a mate right now. She wants to finish her degree and work as a doctor in third world countries. Her birth-rite and family obligations to her status as the first daughter of a noble family beg to differ. In fact, even her wolf seems to be against her. When a chance encounter reveals the man who might just be a perfect fit, will she run, or will she fight? 

Chase Michaels has been alone for seventy-five years. He’s fought in Vietnam, the Persian Gulf, and Afghanistan in the US Army. Somewhat resigned to never finding his true mate, he is shocked when his wolf reacts so strongly to a woman he runs into in the airport. Unprepared for the politics and snobbery of the noble families, Chase finds himself fighting in a different type of war —a war for the heart of a woman he knows should be his. A lot of things are chasing Sam, but who or what will catch her in the end? Read our review here! Visit Krystal Shannan's website!

Cloaked in Fur by T.F. Walsh

Published August 5, 2013
234 pages

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 here! Visit T.F. Walsh's website!

The Garnet Dagger by Andrea R. Cooper


Published March 25, 2013
202 pages

Forbidden to cross the Elvin barrier into human lands, Brock cannot sate his curiosity. Cursed by a vampyre bite that forces him to feed on the life-essence of others, he is unable to touch another without taking their life. Chained by prophesy, he must find a witch, pierce her heart, and draw her blood for his cure. Celeste must escape the monks who have held her prisoner for years. Her magic has been kept dormant by her captors. An ancient powerful Warloc craves her powers. If he succeeds in devouring her magic, she and the world will die.

When Brock falls in love with Celeste before realizing her demise is his cure, will love triumph over his desire to be healed? Will he risk everything to save her from a Warloc, an oath breaker, who also wants her dead? Read our review here! Visit Andrea R. Cooper's website!


Gemini by Penelope Ward

Published May 24, 2013
328 pages

Diner waitress Allison Abraham had no idea her mundane life was about to dramatically change the day she serves a devastatingly handsome customer. She is immediately captivated by the mysterious man who stared through her soul with his electric blue eyes. After he abruptly leaves the restaurant, she can’t get him out of her head. She has no idea that he had actually come on a mission to find her.

Cedric Callahan wasn’t expecting to fall in love at first sight with the pretty waitress he’d set out to find. In fact, she was the last woman on Earth he should be having feelings for. But his selfish heart had other plans. Feeling compelled to know her before revealing himself, he makes her believe their meetings are coincidental. After a passionate romance ignites, Cedric’s lies and secrets are finally revealed, changing both of their lives forever. Read our review here! Visit Penelope Ward!


HASH: Human Alien Species Hybrid 
(The Imprint Trilogy, #1) by April M. Reign

Published June 28, 2013
103 pages

Every night, Jade is rattled by a recurring dream—a dream that is as real as the research institute where she lives. When flames fall from the sky and an alien ship crashes into Earth, Jade becomes government property and at the mercy of scientists. After all, she’s imprinted with an intelligent alien metal that could be the answer to all of Earth’s problems. However, in the wrong hands, the metal implant could become the deadliest weapon known to humankind.

Kept underground for sixteen years, Jade fights to keep her sanity and understand the intelligent organism that is wrapped around her spine. When a new company takes over the science institute, Jade’s alien symbiont warns her of imminent danger. Then Jade meets Aric, the lone survivor from the spaceship. They form an alliance that will change their personal destiny and they put a plan into motion that will alter the future of mankind. Read our review for another book by the author here! Visit April M. Reign's website!

Seize Me (Breakneck Series, #1) 
by Crystal Spears

Published July 10, 2013
256 pages

Winter Belov was the sweet innocent one in her crime family, the dutiful daughter that never disappointed her father. One day, her father does the unspeakable. When he turns his back, Winter flees across the country, taking her life savings with her, determined never to enter that sort of lifestyle again.

No longer innocent, she now lives in Nevada. Lana is her best friend and the only family Winter has. Together, they are two of the best exotic dancers in the county. While working a shift, Pyro, Lana’s long time crush, propositions Winter. He begs her to do a private gig at Breakneck. She accepts, with the condition that Lana dances with her. When Winter’s eyes lock with Braxxon Breaker's, the President of Breakneck, she realizes she is no longer free; she has been seized. He is everything she is running from but at the same time, everything she wants. Braxxon will not take no for an answer, and purposely disrupts Winter’s life.

Rivals of Braxxon’s club are vicious and they do something that will have him out for blood. Winter's and Braxxon’s relationship is anything but a normal one. If they want to be together, crimes must be committed, friendships will be broken and people are going to die. What happens when all that chaos mixes with Winter’s father locating her? It will be a bloodshed when Winter and Braxxon seek revenge and take no prisoners. Please note: This novel contains explicit language, substance use, and sexual situations. It is intended for readers 18 years and up. Read our review here! Visit Crystal Spears!

Viking Fire by Andrea R. Cooper

Published July 29, 2013
172 pages

856 CE, Ireland is a land of myth, magic, and blood. Viking raiders have fought the Irish for over half a century. Rival Irish clans promise only betrayal and carnage.

Kaireen, daughter of Laird Liannon, is suddenly forced into an arranged marriage with her sworn enemy, a Viking. She refuses to submit. With no mention of love, only land and the protection of her clan, she endeavors to get her betrothed banished from her country. Will love find its way around her stubborn heart?

Bram, the Viking, finds himself without future or inheritance as a younger son in his family. A marriage to the Laird’s daughter would grant him land if he swears fidelity and if his men will fight along with the Liannons against any foe—Irish or Viking. However, the Laird’s feisty daughter only holds animosity for him and his kind. Is marriage worth the battle scars of such a relentless opponent? With the blame for a rival laird’s death treacherously set against the Liannons, Kaireen and Bram must find a way to lay aside their differences as an unforeseen darkness sends death snapping at their heels. Read our review for another book by the author here! Visit Andrea R. Cooper's website!

Wicked Wind (Solsti Prophecy, #1) 
by Sharon Kay

Published July 23, 2013
297 pages

SHE GREW UP THINKING SHE WAS HUMAN
Born with the ability to command the wind, Nicole Bonham spends her life hiding her gift. Deciding to take control of her power, she dispenses her own brand of vigilante justice in Chicago’s worst neighborhoods. Stealth and surprise are always on her side.

UNTIL A CHANCE ENCOUNTER WITH A WARRIOR DEMON
Lash demon Gunnar prowls Earth and several supernatural realms to help maintain peace among the immortal species. His chance encounter with Nicole creates a hurricane of sparks between them, and he can’t let her out of his sight until he discovers her true identity. In his two hundred years, he has never seen a creature like her.

PLUNGES THEM BOTH INTO A FIGHT FOR HER LIFE
Nicole and Gunnar race to discover who - or what - is stabbing the city's most destitute residents and stealing their blood. The fire that forged their bond explodes into white-hot passion, weaving their souls together on an unexpected level. Haunted by the past, Gunnar's fiercely protective instincts battle with her need to defeat the creatures she was born to fight. As they track the mastermind behind the attacks, will Nicole’s unique talent unwittingly send her straight into his lair? Read our review here! Visit Sharon Kay!


Congratulations Contest Winners!
Carra E., Mikky V., Tarran G., and Lauren T.! 

Thank you to everyone for entering! We will have another giveaway soon, so check back! And thank you to the authors for their time, generosity, and for writing such awesome books that we love to read!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Cover Reveal - Wicked Wind by Sharon Kay

Wicked Wind by Sharon Kay is getting a 

gorgeous new cover...


Wicked Wind
A Solsti Prophecy Novel
by Sharon Kay
Now Available!

About the Book:

SHE GREW UP THINKING SHE WAS HUMAN
Born with the ability to command the wind, Nicole Bonham spends her life hiding her gift. Deciding to take control of her power, she dispenses her own brand of vigilante justice in Chicago’s worst neighborhoods. Stealth and surprise are always on her side.

UNTIL A CHANCE ENCOUNTER WITH A WARRIOR DEMON
Lash demon Gunnar prowls Earth and several supernatural realms to help maintain peace among the immortal species. His chance encounter with Nicole creates a hurricane of sparks between them, and he can’t let her out of his sight until he discovers her true identity. In his two hundred years, he has never seen a creature like her.

PLUNGES THEM BOTH INTO A FIGHT FOR HER LIFE
Nicole and Gunnar race to discover who - or what - is stabbing the city's most destitute residents and stealing their blood. The fire that forged their bond explodes into white-hot passion, weaving their souls together on an unexpected level. Haunted by the past, Gunnar's fiercely protective instincts battle with her need to defeat the creatures she was born to fight. As they track the mastermind behind the attacks, will Nicole’s unique talent unwittingly send her straight into his lair?


Read our review:
Wicked Wind

About the Author:


Sharon Kay was bitten early by the writing bug. At age twelve she wrote a short story, about a magic ring, that won a statewide contest. With her nose always in a book, she read the most novels for her age group in her local library's summer reading program.

In her teens, writing took a back seat to fashion, as she was determined to find clothes different from what everyone else bought at the mall. And what she couldn't find, she created. She learned to sew, worked in a fabric store after school, and spent her spare time with a needle in hand. Her black and orange prom dress is still one of her favorite creations.

Sharon majored in apparel design in college, spending her summers working in costume shops and bridal boutiques. She worked for ten years in the Chicago garment industry, then switched her focus to apparel production logistics before becoming a stay at home mom. Currently, she lives in the Chicago area with her husband and son. 

Wicked Wind and the Solsti Prophecy series formed in her head one weekend and refused to stay quiet until she put pen to paper. Her characters tend to keep her up at night, as they banter, fall in love, and slay endless varieties of power-hungry demons. She loves to hear from readers!


Sharon Kay

Connect with the Author!
Website

Book Review - The Bargain by Christine S. Feldman


The Bargain
by Christine S. Feldman
Published 2013

186 Pages

Shannon Mahonney lives by herself and works for her high school crush, the perfect Drew Kingston. She is not at all flashy. Instead, she loves earth tones, her dog, and domestic tasks. She gets tongue tied around men, and for this reason her boss, Drew, has no idea that she has a crush on him.

Drew is very serious and work oriented. Planning a project with his childhood home, he is met with resistance by his brother, Michael, who tries to talk Drew out of using his childhood home for a project. Still, Drew is reluctant to listen to Michael, as Michael's reputation has not proven him to be trustworthy. Michael even tries to reach out to Drew through Shannon. However, Shannon remembers Michael from high school, and maintains her guard. Unsure as to his true motives, Michael persists, and with much at stake it is difficult to know who to trust. Shannon wonders if Michael's motives are genuine, and if they should listen to Michael, after all.

This was a sweet read, although quite predictable. I enjoyed it, but found myself rushing through, and never too emotional about it--my gauge as to how much I am enjoying a book. I was entertained, but not swept away. Overall a sweet read, but not too thrilling. The characters were likable, and the romance was slow and smooth.

Reviewed by Kelli 


3.5 STARS

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Book Review - His Haven by Harper A. Brooks


His Haven
by Harper A. Brooks
Published 2013
169 Pages

Lord Henri's world is one of indulgence. As Master of Greystone Manor, he has extended his good fortune to those in need. And in bringing guests to the manor, and offering them a new life, they receive an unexpected gift ... immortality. Avrum was one such human, not so long ago. And now, as a vampire, he is Lord Henri's second in command.

Never one to concern himself with the humans that grace the hallways of Greystone Manor, Avrum is surprised when he feels such a strong connection to Haven. Lord Henri's newest plaything, the beautiful female, Haven, is being paraded around the manor by Lord Henri, and kept alive for her blood. 


Having struck a deal with Lord Henri, Haven accepts her fate. That is, until she meets Avrum. She questions whether she is going mad, or if her attraction to Avrum is genuine. Either way, she feels a new sense of hope. And as she and Avrum begin to quietly fall in love secrets are revealed, causing Avrum to question his life at the manor, and his loyalties.

I was glued to the pages of this book! I loved the characters, especially Avrum, who 
evolves with each chapter. But I wanted more of the vampire world! A little more attention to Avrum's world, and this would have been a 5 star read. Overall, a great story with memorable characters.

Reviewed by Stephanie
★★★
4 STARS

Monday, August 19, 2013

Book Review - Into the Deep by Samantha Young


Into the Deep
by Samantha Young
Published 2013

315 Pages

Charlotte "Charley" Redford is a small town girl living the life of a regular teenager when she meets the new boy in town. Jake Caplin has already met his fair share of girls by the time he meets Charley, but from the moment they meet they are drawn to each other. And although Charley makes Jake work for it, she eventually gives him everything, and they promise to be together forever. But tragedy tears them apart, leaving Charley lost and brokenhearted. 


Fast forward four years, when Charley is studying abroad for a semester program in Edinburgh. Jake is in the same program. And when Charley sees him from across the room at a party, arm in arm with his new girlfriend, she is struck immobile. To further complicate matters, Jake and his girlfriend have become friends with the other American students ... students with whom Charley has forged connections, causing painful rifts and gut wrenching interactions at every turn. 

I couldn't believe what was happening, and wanted to shake Jake and ask him what his problem was! It was difficult to read, and left my heart aching. I really needed someone to vent to during the most difficult scenes. And it isn't until the end of the book that we begin to understand what led to their initial parting. Still, there is a cliffhanger! And although I despise cliffhangers, as a rule, this one left me begging for more! 

A truly great book, this is one of my new favorites for the year. And from one of my favorite authors! Loved it!

Reviewed by Kelli


5 STARS

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Book Review - Wicked Wind by Sharon Kay


Wicked Wind (Solsti Prophecy, #1)
by Sharon Kay
Published 2013

312 Pages

Nicole Bonham has a special gift. She can alter the wind, creating disturbances in temperature and the surrounding environment. She has never understood where her gift came from, or its purpose. Having lost her parents at a young age, she has always felt a little out of place in the world. Still, anchored to the earth with her sisters, and their equally unusual talents, she has been attempting to live the life of a normal young woman. But as night falls, Nicole's interests are anything but normal. And as she and her sister, Brooke, are exploring the darkest nooks of Chicago's vast underbelly, she is unaware that she is being observed and pursued by the Lash demon, Gunnar. A formidable alpha male, Gunnar finally makes his move to approach Nicole ... and her life will never be the same.

Wicked Wind is an incredibly well written tale. With a fresh perspective and a whirlwind plot, this was a brilliant paranormal tale with a twist! Characters with depth and range filled the pages--some were lovable, while others were loathsome, but all offered meaningful contributions to the story! And I loved the story! Gunnar epitomized the role of an alpha male with shiny dark hair, and crystal blue eyes ... swoon! I loved this guy! And his protective nature was breathtaking. As for his female counterpart, Nicole, she was an ass-kicking female lead, with plenty of quirks and flaws, making her an awesome match for the fearsome and gorgeous Gunnar.

A brilliant story! I loved this book, and can't wait for the next instal
lment in the series! 

Available on Amazon

Reviewed by Stephanie
★★★★★
5 STARS


Kelli and I both wanted to read this sizzling hot book! Here is her take on it:

I read all through the night and woke up wanting to start reading again. I am so happy to have a book to gush about after a bit of a dry spell. I have to say, I love the paranormal lead men! They are so swoon worthy, haha! Seriously, really I mean it. And the lead female held her own, too. No simpering females here!

Gunnar and Nicole both acknowledge an intense attraction to one another that they act upon at once! How refreshing, none of this "Oh no, really, I shouldn't". They realize they can't keep their hands off of each other, so they don't. The result? Super hot passion, off the charts! This is the first book in a series, and I say, "bring them on!" Not only is it a steamy read, but a great story with well developed characters and believable parallel worlds. I loved it!

Reviewed by Kelli

★★★★★
5 STARS

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Book Review - The Darkest Craving by Gena Showalter


The Darkest Craving (Lords of the Underworld, #10)
by Gena Showalter
Published 2013

480 Pages

The Darkest Craving is the 10th book in this amazing series that revolves around the irresistibly seductive, and imaginatively powerful, Lords of the Underworld. This is a must read. So, if you have yet to read the previous books, I suggest that you get a move on! Engrossing, hilarious, dark, and thrilling, the Lords of the Underworld series is one of my favorite paranormal romance series!

In a remote fortress in Budapest, six immortal warriors are bound by an ancient curse. They travel the world searching for a sacred relic, hoping to break their curse. Kane is a Lord of the Underworld who houses the demon Disaster--a pesky demon who is always bringing pitfalls around and on this beautiful warrior. Because he is literally a walking disaster, he is often left behind during battles. He was trapped in Hell, tortured and much worse, when he is rescued by the Half-fae, Josephina Aisling. And from there, things get even more dangerous... and all the more enthralling.

I am absolutely removed from today and transported to another realm, where sexy, immortal warriors battle with their own need to claim women that they say they don't want (but cannot resist)! Such a great book, I loved the character, Josephina, who added humor and feminine strength to the story, as a whole. Gena Showalter has done it again! I would definitely recommend this book; however, definitely start at the beginning of the series--you won't want it to end!

Reviewed by Kelli


4.5 STARS

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Book Review - Dominic by April M. Reign

Dominic (Vampire Biker Series) Season 1 Episode 1 (Disciples of the Damned, #1)
by April M. Reign
Published 2012 

49 Pages

Betrayed by his vampire kin, chained in silver, and cast out to sea, Dominic has been at the bottom of the ocean for two centuries, and has finally awakened. But the order of vampires has changed, as has the world at large. And Dominic must adjust to the new ways, if justice is to be had for those who betrayed him so long ago.

A hot alpha male with old world charm and attitude, Dominic is on a mission. Luckily, his friend Palo doesn’t let him get away with much, forcing him to learn the new ways. Dominic agrees, knowing that his adjustment is vital to his survival. But the new world order is filled with power hungry vampires, and humans alike, where underground vampire feeding clubs and human farms that harvest blood are illegal but commonplace. Still, there are joyous aspects of this new world, too. 


Dominic discovers TV, scantily clad women, the internet... and motorcycles! Mounting his steel horse, Dominic is a badass on wheels, seeking revenge, raising hell, and charming a few women along the way.

I enjoyed this glimpse into Dominic’s world! However, I didn’t feel like I had a chance to get to know him as well as I wanted to! This was a big story for such a short read. It will be interesting to see how the series unfolds!

Reviewed by Stephanie 

★★★
4 STARS

Book Review - Axel by Harper Sloan

Axel (Corps Security, #1)
by Harper Sloan
Published 2013

380 Pages

First, let's just get this out of the way: Would you look at the cover?! Whoa! That is one fine looking cover! Anyway, the book review... right, the book! I liked it! Although, the start was rough, with a sad and hard-to-read beginning. From there, things looked up.

Isabelle West had it all at 17--a loving family, popularity in school, great looks, and an awesome boyfriend. She loved her boyfriend, Axel, and he loved her. But through all sorts of chances of fate, things take a tragic turn. Axel is deployed, never calls, and she is unable to locate him. She loses her independence, becomes estranged from her family and friends, and turns into little more than a shell of the person she once was. But once again, the fates intervene. And after several years, Isabelle gets back on her feet. Suddenly, a ghost from her past reappears. But can things ever go back to the way they once were?

I was rooting for Isabelle and her long lost love, hoping things would work out! It didn't hurt that the story was filled with hot alpha males! I feel a series may be in the works on this one. A great read!

Reviewed by Kelli


4 STARS

Book Review - Who He Is by Shanora Williams

Who He Is (FireNine, #1)
by Shanora Williams
Published 2013

554 Pages

Eliza Smith keeps to herself, getting lost in art and photography. She is shy, and not in any hurry to meet guys or to get into a relationship. She has a plan. She wants to succeed in business, and is off to a great start with a college scholarship. She has some serious baggage from an abusive, chaotic childhood when she lived with her mother and stepfather, but now she lives with her dad in a safe, loving home. Her dad manages a band called FireNine, and convinces Eliza to come on tour with them for the summer so that she can live a little.

FireNine's lead singer, Gage Grendal (who happens to be Eliza's high school crush) has a new girl every night (or day!), behaves arrogantly, and treats every day like a party. He insists that Eliza really wants him, and that it is only a matter of time before she admits it. Well, of course he is right! And Eliza agrees to a summer-long fling with him. Soon enough, they both realize that what they have may be more than a fling. But Eliza has her own dreams. She has worked hard, and doesn't want to throw her dreams away. 

This is a well written book, and I loved the story! The characters are flawed and real. Unfortunately for me, the book ended with a huge cliffhanger! I hope the second book comes out soon, or I will just die if I don't find out what happens! 4 1/2 stars, not 5, only because I a not a fan of cliffhangers.

Reviewed by Kelli
4.5 STARS

Friday, August 9, 2013

Book Review - The Garnet Dagger by Andrea R. Cooper


The Garnet Dagger (Legends of Oblivion, #1)
by Andrea R. Cooper
Published 2013

222 Pages

The Garnet Dagger is an epic fantasy romance that incorporates historical elements with mythological beings in an enchanting world of love, honor, and lore. Vivid imagery and descriptive passages create an alluring backdrop to this rich, well written, and absorbing tale of elves, dragons, and witches. But don’t be fooled, this is not a children’s fairy tale!

Brock has always had a fascination for humans, and has secretly crossed the barrier to the human realm on more than one occasion. But when a curse befalls him, he finds himself cast from his home, as the elders advise, “Our fate depends on you. You are the Reaper of Death, but also the Bringer of our Hope.”

Leaving his elven home, Brock journeys into the unknown world where he soon learns that things are much more complex, and far more magical, than he ever imagined. Traveling from village to village, he gathers bits and pieces of clues, and eventually joins forces with the tortured waif of a woman, Celeste, who has her own battles to overcome.

The Garnet Dagger incorporates dark elements, mildly descriptive violence, and sexual encounters into a perfectly paced and enthralling story. Beautifully executed and thoroughly spellbinding, this story was more of a journey than a book. And I loved every minute of it! A rare gem, indeed.

Reviewed by Stephanie


5 STARS

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Book Review - Seize Me by Crystal Spears

Seize Me (Breakneck, #1)
by Crystal Spears
Published 2013

277 Pages

Recently I have been obsessed with reading biker/ motorcycle club books, and love the alpha men and edgy living. But I think I finally found my limit. (Well, maybe not, since I was up until almost 4:00 a.m. reading! Ha!) 
When author Crystal Spears gives a warning that this novel contains explicit language (totally okay with me!), offensive sexual situations (let me be the judge), drugs, and abuse, she isn't kidding. But the chemistry between Winter Belov and Braxxon Breaker is off-the-charts, making it worthwhile.

Winter ran away from a terrifying life in the Russian Mob and vows to stay as far away and hidden from it as possible. She brings her savings with her and decides to put her years of dance classes to good use as an exotic pole dancer. While working with her best friend, Lana, she catches the eye of Pyro, a member of the local motorcycle club, Breakneck. Pyro commissions both of them for a private gig at the 30th birthday bash for Breakneck's president, Braxxon Breaker. 
Winter is reluctant, but agrees to go, as her friend Lana is absolutely gaga over Pyro. At the party, Braxxon Breaker sees Winter's performance and wants a private show... in his room, no less! He is everything she is trying to escape from. She tries to resist but is helpless against him, and he won't take no for an answer, anyway!

This is a story of violence, abuse, drugs, and gangs. It is definitely not a book for the weak of heart. It takes us to what I imagine to be a realistic portrayal of life inside a motorcycle club. The one thing I loved, and why I couldn't put the book down, was (dare I say) the chemistry between Winter and Braxxon. It is a hard call on a rating but I think I will give it 4 stars, just because it was so gripping!

Reviewed by Kelli
4 STARS

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Book Review - Abandon All Hope by M.J. Schiller

Abandon All Hope (Rocking Romance, #2)
by M. J. Schiller
Published 2013

248 Pages

Chase Hatton was twelve when he first met his new neighbor, Hope Creswell. He was not experienced at such things, but he knew it was love at first sight. They hit if off immediately and became like peanut butter and jelly, in a very platonic and endearing way. It wasn't until their senior year in high school, six years later, that Chase finally worked up the nerve to ask her out. They couldn't believe they wasted so much time when they were so in love! Then, on the night of prom, something happened and Hope disappeared.

Fast forward eight years. Hope is at the bottom of the food chain writing for The Chicago Globe, while Chase is a headlining Rock Star. Chase is in town for a show and Hope's boss, Jack Delaney, learns of her high school connection with him. Jack wants to do several articles about Chase for the entertainment section of the paper and blindsides Hope, assigning her to shadow Chase during his stay in the windy city. Hope wants nothing more than to be viewed as a serious reporter, but she does not want to see Chase EVER again, and does not want to write an article in the entertainment section. However, what Jack Delaney wants, Jack gets. And so, off she goes to interview t
he only man she ever loved, and the only man who, incidentally, ripped her heart out.

I had great hopes for this book! It started off strong, and I couldn't stop reading the first 20%! But then it fizzled. It hit a wall for me, and just got kind of boring. It went from a 5 star read to 3 stars, and then just stayed there until almost the end, at which point it got a little more exciting again. I really loved the beginning of the story, and wish it had kept me riveted! Still, I enjoyed it and would recommend it.

Reviewed by Kelli


3.5 STARS

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Book Review - Chasing Sam by Krystal Shannan

Chasing Sam (Vegas Mates, #1)
by Krystal Shannan
Published 2013 

80 Pages

Chasing Sam is a novella that introduces us to a world of powerful, alluring werewolves, and their spirited female counterparts. Chase Michaels, an Army Ranger and a strapping male werewolf, has just returned home from Afghanistan when he bumps into a beautiful female werewolf at the airport. He is enchanted, as he has never felt such a strong connection to anyone. But when he learns her name he knows there is little chance for them to be together. Still, he cannot deny the attraction, and makes it his goal to find her again.

Samantha “Sam” Damakis is a female wolf, and part of a noble family of werewolves. Despite the obligations associated with her noble bloodline, and her parents' desire to have her home and mated, Sam is pursuing her dreams of attending medical school and seeing the world. So, when she arrives home for a holiday visit and bumps into the gorgeous hunk, Chase, at the airport she is shocked by the feelings that ensue. She has never before felt such a powerful attraction to anyone. And her inner wolf feels just as strongly. But after a brief meeting, she and Chase go their seperate ways. Sam is left with a sense of regret over an opportunity lost, and decides to seek him out. Her sisters remind her that her parents will never accept him, as his bloodline is not a noble one. But Sam isn’t going to give up that easily.

Her parents have other plans; however, and as the story unfolds we learn about werewolf traditions, hunting and mating rituals, the depth of Sam's obligations, and what she and Chase are willing to risk to be together. We also learn that--despite their otherwise civilized demeanor--werewolves have the capacity for ferocity that can rear up at any time, and with deadly consequences.


I fell in love with these characters! For a novella, they were surprisingly well developed. I found myself rooting for them from the start. My only complaint is that it wasn’t a full length novel! I'm excited for the second book, and to learn more about this exciting world of shifters (hint: there are more than just wolves)! A fantastic read! 


Available on Amazon


Reviewed by Stephanie
★★★★★
5 STARS


Saturday, August 3, 2013

Book Review - Unattainable by Leslie P. Garcia

Unattainable
by Leslie P. Garcia
Published 2013

276 Pages

This book takes place on the Rio Grande, on a horse ranch bordering Mexico. It has all the makings of a great romance--a guarded gal, a broody guy, and past heartbreaks. But it never quite gets there for me. And while I liked the characters, Adela "Dell" Rosales and Jovani "Jovi" Trevino, I was never able to fully connect with them and get lost in their story. There were a few steamy scenes that gave me hope, but they were gone as soon as they started.

The story is about Dell, who returns to her father's horse ranch after his death, as heir to his estate. She is jaded and not looking for love, due to a devastating tragedy with her fiancé. She starts to house girls who are in trouble; mostly juveniles, and one very young girl that she hopes to eventually adopt.

The story continues as we learn that the ranch is under surveillance by the DEA, due to its border location. And now Dell has become a suspect for possible drug trafficking. A former DEA agent, Jovani "Jovi" Trevino, is assigned to investigate the ranch on an undercover basis. He meets Dell and they are immediately attracted to one another. They share a few stolen embraces and kisses, but are always interrupted or come to their senses before things can progress. Of course, this is a forbidden romance, as Jovi is undercover, lying to Dell, and now struggling with feelings he is beginning to have for her.

This book had some strong points and some issues. I did struggle a bit with the depth of political discussion, but kept up. I would have preferred to have the romance in the forefront, rather than a meandering love story. Still, it is a well written book, and a good read! 


Reviewed by Kelli

★★★
3.5 STARS

Friday, August 2, 2013

Cover Reveal - Fueled by K. Bromberg

~ Cover Reveal ~

Fueled 

The Driven Trilogy, book #2
by K. Bromberg
Releasing August 27, 2013!

About the Book:

Colton stole my heart. He wasn't supposed to, and I sure as hell didn't want him to, but he crashed into my life, ignited feelings within me that I thought had died forever, and fueled a passion that I never knew could exist.

Rylee fell out of that damn storage closet and into my life. Now I don't think I'll ever be the same. She's seen glimpses of the darkness within me, and yet she's still here. Still fighting for me. She is without a doubt the saint, and I am most definitely the sinner.

How is it the one thing neither of us wanted—neither of us anticipated that fateful night—has us fighting so hard to keep?

He steals my breath, stops my heart, and brings me back to life again all in a split second of time. But how can I love a man who won't let me in? Who continually pushes me away to prevent me from seeing the damaged secrets in his past? My heart has fallen, but patience and forgiveness can only go so far.

How can I desire a woman who unnerves me, defies me, and forces me to see that in the deep, black abyss of my soul there's someone worthy of her love? A place and person I swore I'd never be again. Her selfless heart and sexy body deserve so much more than I'll ever be capable of giving her. I know I can't be what she needs, so why can't I just let her go?

We are driven by need and fueled with desire, but is that enough for us to crash into love?


About the Author:

K. Bromberg lives in Southern California with her husband and three children. When she needs a break from the daily chaos of her life, you can most likely find her on the treadmill or with Kindle in hand, devouring the pages of a good, saucy book.

Fueled is K. Bromberg’s second published novel, and is the highly anticipated second book of The Driven Trilogy. Driven was her well-received debut novel, and Book #1 of the series.

Read our review:

Driven

Connect with the Author!
Website


Featured Author Interview - K. Bromberg

Featured Author
K. Bromberg

About the Author

K. Bromberg is that reserved woman sitting in the corner that has you all fooled about the wild child inside of her—the one she lets out every time her fingertips touch the computer keyboard. She’s a wife, mom, child rustler, toy pick-er-upper, chauffer, resident web-slinger, LaLaloopsy watching, American Girl doll dressing multi-tasker of all things domestic and otherwise. She likes her diet cokes with rum, her music loud, and her pantry stocked with a cache of chocolate.

K. lives in Southern California with her husband and three children. When she needs a break from the daily chaos of her life, you can most likely find her on the treadmill or with Kindle in hand, devouring the pages of a good, saucy book. 


Interview

M
BB: We're so excited to hear about the history that led to The Driven Trilogy! How long have you been writing, and what inspires you?


KB: I’ve been writing forever. I was always that kid who you hated in high school English class who wrote papers that were longer than the requirement. The funny thing is that I was a total stickler for grammar back then and now my writing would make my English teachers (or any English teachers for that matter) cringe. I write how someone thinks or talks or feels, and that is not always conducive to proper grammar. I wrote a book after graduating from college... back then I thought it was great, and I did have interest from some agents. But it just wasn’t in me to rewrite the whole thing to fit some person’s idea of what was acceptable. And over the years I’d start a story and then never go anywhere with it. So to answer the question, writing is just what I’ve always done. It’s how I express myself.

Inspiration is a funny thing. It strikes you at the oddest of times. For instance I was having trouble writing the book jacket blurb for Fueled—it’s by far the hardest thing for an author to write. How do you condense 140k words into five hundred that portray everything you’ve written in a way so that people want to actually read it? I was in Costco with my three kids—in the paper goods aisle to be exact—and it hit me. My poor kids had to sit and wait while I typed out the gist of it on my phone. Inspiration can come in the form of a song lyric, a person’s comment overheard in a restaurant, anywhere.

MBB: Very interesting, and so true about inspiration! What approach did you take to begin writing your first book, Driven? Did you change this approach for your second book, Fueled?

KB: With Driven I started with these two characters that wouldn’t leave my imagination alone. I had been reading a lot of books and knew I could write better than some of them…and I’m not saying that out of a position of conceit but rather owning the one talent I’ve always had…I knew I could write better, but I wasn’t sure if I could put it all together and have it come across on paper how it was in my head. My husband was traveling a lot for work so once I put the kids to bed, that’s how I’d spend my time while he was away.

As to my approach, I’m an outliner. Big time. Big, long detailed outlines. And they have to be done in longhand. Odd, I know, but that’s how I work. I did this with Driven and had like 80 pages in a loose-leaf notebook by the time I was done. I write beginning to end. I don’t write scenes and then try to shell game them in to fit together. For Fueled, I kept the same approach. The outline was a little less detailed as I already had memorized character traits that I didn’t need to write down anymore in an outline.

The hardest thing in writing a trilogy is having to plant threads of plot lines that carry all the way through the books. Before I wrote Driven, I knew the gist of all three books. I knew where the story line was going and so outlining for me is essential to make sure those threads are there.

MBB: It sounds like a lot of planning and preparation went into the series! Can you share a little about the plot and characters?

KB: The Driven Trilogy is about two damaged people that find each other in that time in their lives when they need each other the most. 


Rylee Thomas is a headstrong female who lost her fiancé in a tragic accident and thought her heart could never love again. She’s a selfless woman who takes care of broken children, abandoned and unadoptable by societal standards. With Rylee, what you see is what you get. Colton Donavan is a playboy racecar driver who lives life on the edge of reckless and out of control. Adopted into Hollywood royalty after an abusive childhood, he never lets anyone get too close to him. With Colton, what you see is most definitely not what you get.

The trilogy spans their struggle to fight for the one thing they never wanted, but now don’t want to live without. The books span their struggle to face their own demons and find themselves again by accepting love from each other. Driven was told strictly through Rylee’s point of view but I’ll tell you that Fueled (book #2) will be a mixture of both Rylee and Colton’s point of view.

MBB: Did writing the first book, Driven, or your second book require any special research or preparation?

KB: Hmmm…I had to do some research on Indy racing. I knew the sport and the basics but I had to figure out the schedule and some terminology. When it came to the boys and Rylee’s job. I kind of flew by the seat of my pants and made it up as I went. Since the release of Driven, I’ve been contacted by several people that work in the field who’ve given me more insight on how the boys in The House would react to certain situations. But for the most part, not too much research.

MBB: How nice to have some additional insight! How would you describe your book, in relation to the contemporary romance genre? And what do you like most about the genre?

KB: My book falls into an in between category. It is by definition of the explicit description in the sex scenes an erotic romance. Most bloggers however tell me that they hate it being under that genre because it has such a detailed plot that they feel it should be classified as a contemporary romance. So I’m okay with either one. I like the genre because these books usually follow the journey of the female character finding out who they really are and at the same time becoming comfortable with their sexuality and owning it. I think is a very important time in the life of a woman and enjoy watching the journey and transformation.

MBB: What are your plans for future projects?

KB: I’m just about finished outlining Crashed (book #3 in the trilogy). I’ve also started a stand alone titled Strike Out that might surprise some of my readers – more of a New Adult with a little ‘bit of explicit’ mixed in (and don’t worry Driven fans, it’s not even outlined yet). It was a storyline that called to me and I have to write it. Crashed will be finished first and is definitely my priority.

MBB: That's exciting news, especially since readers will be eager to get their hands on book #3! What advice do you have for other writers who are just starting out?

KB: A couple of things:

1. Write, write, write. I can’t believe how much my writing improved from Driven to Fueled just from writing more.

2. A good editor is worth their weight in gold.

3. Bloggers are your best friend. They can be your biggest fan or worst critic. Treat each one, regardless of the size of their blog, with respect.

4. Make yourself accessible to your readers. A little bit of time goes a long way – especially in light of all of the plagiarism scandals in recent weeks.

5. Beta readers are essential. They can see things that you might not be able to and give you valuable insight.

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

KB: Ugh! Just one? Who has published the most books because that means I’d have more to read and keep me from going insane. On that basis alone, I’d have to say Nora Roberts because the woman has more books than anyone out there—I’d have books to read for months!

MBB: Before we close, is there anything else you would like to add?

KB: Of course, haven’t you noticed I’m wordy and have a lot to say? I’d just like to thank all of the readers and bloggers that have embraced Driven and plugged the hell out of it on their sites and social media so that it didn’t get lost in the fray of all of the other new releases out there. You guys truly are awesome. You took a chance on this new indie author and I promise to not disappoint with Fueled on August 27th! And as always, please feel free to contact me any time!

MBB: This was great fun! Thank you, K, for giving us a behind the scenes look at how The Driven Trilogy came to be! We eagerly await the arrival of Fueled on August 27th.



Connect with the Author!

Read our review for Driven by clicking here!

Interviewed by Stephanie

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Book Review - Him by Carey Heywood


Him 
by Carey Heywood
Published 2013
310 Pages

This book is about a high school love that has gone terribly wrong. We've all been there. Sarah Miller fell in love with her best friend in high school, William Ethan Price, then was absolutely shocked when she found out he felt the same way about her. They were already inseparable, but now they were basically attached at the hip. He was her first (at prom, no less). Then, one day she just disappears, without a goodbye or an explanation.

They had already talked about forever, and no one is more shocked than him when Sarah leaves in the middle of the night to go live with her favorite uncle. Sarah attends college, works at a local coffee shop, and tries to get over him, but no one can replace him. They are too short, too tall, floss wrong, whatever. She completely throws herself into her career with a successful company that she has pioneered. She is satisfied with her life, until she has to go back home to attend her brother's wedding. She just wants to make it through the wedding without running into him. Luck is not on her side. She doesn't even make it home before she runs into him on the flight home.

He is headed home as well, and she doesn't find out he is actually her brother's best man until he drives her home and enters her family's house like he lives there...which he has. While she was gone, he was a regular fixture at the Miller house, and even introduced her brother to his future fiancé. She tries to escape him, not wanting to rehash the past, but he will not relent. He demands to know why she left. She cannot believe he would have the nerve to ask. Could there have had a misunderstanding? That is the only thing she can think of because when she finally confronts him about what happened 
he is clueless.

I liked the story and the reveal toward the end. The writing is also very good, and I connected with the characters. Sarah and Will definitely have great chemistry, but some of the story was a little too far fetched for me. The reason they were apart, and for so long, with him being a huge part of her family didn't make a lot of sense. Although some parts were a bit irritating, I liked it enough to want to see how it turned out. 


Reviewed by Kelli

3.5 STARS

Book Review - One Night With a Rock Star by Chana Keefer

One Night With a Rock Star
by Chana Keefer
Published 2013

434 Pages

Soooooooooooo....what to say about this book? It is hard to write a review because I was not obsessed and dying to discuss it with others. However, it was a new take on an old subject that does not belong in mainstream romance. Still, it kept my interest, made me think, and had me softly in love. The ending was very clever with a reveal about an aspect of the book that had me really irritated throughout the major body of the work. That being said, this book could really be considered Christian Literature because it was definitely biased toward abstinence.

One chance meeting at a rock concert changes Esther Collins and Sky's world. She is a novice model and journalism student, who has been soothed for years by Sky's music. She decides to attend his concert, and gets backstage through a friend of hers. She meets Sky, and is whisked away in his limo to his apartment for a very innocent, yet misinterpreted night that changes both of their lives.

Esther feels that something changed between them, and for the first time may even think she found the man she has been saving herself for. But then Sky disappears for two years! With no contact at all. She is devastated, but moves on and even kind of dates. But she never truly gets over him.

This story takes us to missionary work in third world countries (very touching), the castles of Scotland, ranches in Texas, and rock concerts. It is a moving and well written book, but one that is way outside of my usual genre. Would I recommend it? Probably, if you are going on a cruise or a beachy destination, and want an engrossing (yet sweet) read, that covers a lot of ground around God. In the mood for angsty, hot loving? Then I would pass.


Reviewed by Kelli


3.5 STARS