ARC REVIEW – The Wolf’s Lover, by Samantha MacLeod

#urbanfantasy #Norsemyths #mythology #eroticromance

Adult/18+ read

 

Blurb

Karen McDonald buried her past.

Five years after her divorce, Karen is a wildlife biologist studying wolves in Yellowstone National Park. But when the wolf she tranquilizes turns into a man – a man she recognizes from the recurring dreams which have haunted her for years – her rational, scientific world gives way to something stranger and more dangerous.

The man is Vali, son of the Norse god Loki. He was imprisoned thousands of years ago, cursed to live inside a wolf’s body. Now Vali tells Karen he’s being hunted…and he’s hunting as well.

Because something has awoken beneath the volcanic caldera of Yellowstone, an ancient power that could spell the end of everything, unless Karen is willing to risk her life, and unearth the secrets of her past, to save her world.

My Review

Sexy and Spellbinding ~ 5 stars    TOP READ

LOVED it! The Wolf’s Lover is another sexy and spellbinding foray into the world created by Samantha Macleod which blends characters from Norse mythology with reality as we know it. Although can be read as a standalone, if you have read some of the author’s other books you will no doubt be as delighted as I to once again be reunited with some of the characters and places that were included in them.

Karen and Vali (serious hottie alert!) are a wonderful couple and I just loved how their relationship develops. Vali, the mysterious and unknown lover who invades her dreams, becomes a powerful lone wolf and then morphs into a man of flesh and blood, destined to change her life forever. As the son of the Norse god Loki, Vali is far from ordinary and his destiny is entwined with that of Karen’s in ways neither he nor she could have imagined.

Karen is a strong woman with a painful past and has a lot in common with Vali. Indeed, they are just what the other needs, yet fate has other ideas and their love will be sorely tested as the plot progresses. The secondary characters are well developed and I particularly enjoyed meeting Loki and Caroline from the Trickster’s Lover (click on book title for review). They not only have their own role to play in this story but we also get to find out more about Loki’s past and how their relationship is progressing. I won’t say anymore about the storyline, except that it is a real doozy and once again this author is to be congratulated for such a unique and impressive plot.

The novel is beautifully written in terms of both language and form and the storyline is strong, entwining romance, mythology, tension and suspense. It questions whether even our free will is free or whether is it out of our control and subject to the machinations of others. Indeed, the themes the book deals with – the cycle of life and death, love, family are deep. The strength of the story and the characterisations are matched by the quality and depth of the erotic lovemaking scenes between Vali and Karen and the myriad of emotions they evoke – you may need to ensure you have access to unlimited iced drinks and before reading…

Recommended for fans of urban fantasy and myths and legends who enjoy sizzling lovemaking scenes with strong characters and plot and excellent world-building.

Reviewed by Tina Williams

Please note an ARC of this book was given to me by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Purchase Links

Amazon US Amazon UK

Connect with the Author

https://sammacleod.wordpress.com/about-me/
https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100012016893561

 

 

 

Review Round-Up March ’16

Hello readers,

We hope that you have had a super Easter, with plenty of chocolate to enjoy, and a great read over the holiday weekend. We have been lucky with outbursts of sunshine and beautiful daffodils in bloom. This has meant some nice long walks during the day, with a relaxing evening reading, drinking tea and stuffing my face with chocolate – some of my favourite things 🙂

It seems that many authors have had new releases recently, or are just about to. It’s a busy time of year for them and bloggers. We’ve had new release reviews for Tim O’Rourke, C.J. Pinard, Laura Barnard and Martyn J. Pass(please see below), and over the following month we have reviews and/or releases from Alan Jones, Pat Spence, Mark Matthews, Lynda O’Rourke and Helena Fairfax, and more!

Also, keep a lookout for our Tamworth LitFest post, which Tina has been working on, where romance authors will be attending an event at Tamworth’s library and St. Editha’s church on Saturday 11th June, 2016. More to follow soon!

Happy reading!

Caroline & Tina 🙂

Below are all of our reviews from March 2016. Clicking on the book title will take you to our full review post, with more info on the release!

TrappedTrapped in His World (Dark Romance #1) by Roxy Sinclair, dark romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: There is no escape…

I was only supposed to be his replacement secretary for one week. Now he has me trapped in his world of twisted and dark desires. I try to get away and I can’t – but the question is – do I really want to?

Navia Watson is struggling to survive. She has just left school and can’t hold a steady job. Just when she feels that there is no hope, her best friend makes her an offer that she can’t refuse. All she has to do is be a temporary stand in secretary for her friend’s position as the secretary for some billionaire for only a week. One week for some quick cash – how hard can it be? She is in for the surprise of her life when she walks into Jason Black’s office. The dark, sexy billionaire quickly pulls her into his web, one that she can’t unravel herself from. His piercing eyes call to her very soul and the darkness lurking in their depths entices her.

She suspects that the man is dangerous, but she could never have imagined the depth of the mysteries surrounding him. By the time Navia discovers his true nature, it’s too late for her salvation. Even if is she could leave him, there’s no way he will let her go. She is his and she is not sure she really wants to get away.

This is a dark romance novella with NO cliffhanger. Intended for audiences 18+ and not for the fainthearted. Contains situations some readers might find objectionable. 

Lolita LondonTaken by the Sheriff by Lolita London, erotic, historical western romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Widowed Sheriff Terrence Evans has lost it all. No matter how much he throws himself into work, his loneliness is eating him up.

Governess Amanda Carter didn’t plan to fall for her boss, and certainly didn’t plan to submit to him out of wedlock. She quickly finds that his commanding tongue and firm hand, however, ignites something within her that nothing can extinguish.

Or so she thinks.

The passionate whirlwind comes to a halt, however, when they find out that she’s pregnant. Can they have it all together? Or is this a scandal that will tear apart more than just their hearts, but their small town as well?

This book contains explicit sex scenes and is intended for mature readers only.

jaredJared (River Pack Wolves #3) by Alisa Woods, NA paranormal/shifter romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: He was broken by the war. Her secret could destroy her family.

Ex-Marine sniper Jared River left the war, but the war never really left him. He’s a broken wolf who’s only good for one thing now—killing men. And he’s peering down his scope at Senator Krepky, the anti-shifter politician about to ruin the lives of all the shifters Jared loves.

Grace Krepky is the daughter of the Senator, a good girl with a passion for her father’s politics and who’s earned her way into being his campaign manager. Only problem? She’s secretly a shifter… and the clock is ticking until her own father inadvertently forces that secret into the open, ruining both their lives.

Jared’s all set to pull the trigger when he sees something shocking through the Senator’s glass walls—his daughter is a wolf. Jared puts his gun aside to go after the fleeing girl, but he already knows this can only end in one of two ways—either he’ll convince her to reveal herself to the Senator and stop his anti-shifter legislation, or Jared will have to assassinate her father.

If only she wasn’t making him come alive again…

Jared is a complete novel with HEA, the third in the River Pack Wolves trilogy (all standalone stories, but best enjoyed if you read them in order!).

Contains scorching hot shifters, alpha military heroes, and dark family secrets. Only readers over 18 should dive into the deliciously hot world of the River brothers.

boardedBoarded (novella) by Annie Nicholas, sci-fi romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Assigned as an interpreter to a mysterious alien race, Liaison Sadie Beckit crosses multiple star systems to the remote Cyngi home world on an old space freighter. Knowledge is essential when dealing with aliens. A misspoken word or a careless gesture could lead to wars so liaisons are necessary to keep the peace, but Sadie is kept in the dark about her new employer. This mysterious species has chosen to withhold most of their culture and language information.

All she’s told is to accompany Ambassdor Nual back to Central Station. Sounds easy enough, but the lawless void of space holds many dangers.

Necessary EvilsNecessary Ends (Nick Harland #1) by Bill Carson, crime thriller (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: John Kane’s quiet mundane world is suddenly ripped apart and he is thrust into a hellish nightmare existence after the murder of his beloved wife. The pain and anguish over his wife’s murder has been harnessed, molded and channeled into a hatred of the most abnormal ferocity, and an un-closable door had now been wrenched open in his mind, and he had crossed over into the darker realms of humanity where the merciless, cruel, vicious and uncompromising sides of human nature reside. His brain had been rewired and the switch had been flicked.

Has all this been preordained? Are there sinister dark forces at work at here? Necessary Evils will have you on the edge of your seat with your heart in your mouth.

Porn Money & Wannabe Mommy2Porn Money & Wannabe Mummy (The Debt & the Doormat #3) by Laura Barnard, chick-lit, comedy/humour (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: What is it about turning thirty that sends rational women into a tailspin?

 
Suddenly going from having all the time in the world, to cringing at the ticking of her biological clock, Poppy is drowning under the strain of trying to get pregnant.
 
With a dad in the throes of a mid-life crisis, a crazy mother-in-law and time racing towards Lilly’s wedding, will she be able to cope with it all…and give Ryan the baby they so desperately want?
 
Finally able to inherit her dad’s porn money, Jazz can’t wait to be rich! She can buy a house in Chelsea, go out partying with her old mates and start living how she deserves.
 
But with Ollie, Jemima and Meryl each clawing at their own little piece of her happiness, will she have to leave behind those closest to her in exchange for it?

The real question is, can Poppy and Jazz rescue their own lives before everything gets ruined, or will their own stubbornness destroy the lives they’ve created?

Evening BreezeEvening Breeze (novella) by R.M. Miller, literary erotica (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: University student Ray was planning to spend the summer on a simple walking holiday with his gregarious girlfriend, but at the last minute she informs him she’s off on an exciting trip overseas with other friends, including a guy who is sweet on her, and without Ray. Despondent and dejected, Ray consoles himself by accepting an off the cuff invitation to join the pretty but reserved and difficult to know fellow student Daphne at her family home deep in the countryside. Ray sees it as an opportunity to get revenge on his girlfriend with a distracting summer fling, but he doesn’t count on falling in love with Daphne, nor is he prepared for the wayward attentions of Daphne’s scheming younger sister Izzy. An enchanting, provocative and powerful tale of passion, betrayal and love, Evening Breeze is a story you will never forget.

The Unfinished Tale of Sophie AndersonThe Unfinished Tale of Sophie Anderson by Martyn J. Pass, contemporary romance, drama (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: Welding, a Jack Reacher novel and a night in with a bottle of red wine seems to be as exciting as Sophie Anderson’s life gets.

That is until a stint of on-site work brings Tom into her life. He’s been her foreman for years now but when they’re forced to work together for the first time, Sophie begins to see that happiness might have finally taken a chance on her and that the often overlooked manager might just be the man of her dreams.

But Mel, her best friend and flat mate, has a harrowing past that returns with devastating results and Sophie is forced to wonder whether happiness is real or just a fairy tale told to hide the bars and walls of a man-made prison.

Love, heat and passion are as much a part of Sophie’s tale as the grief and suffering which follows her every step. Expect to find her unfinished tale a real and painful journey into the life of someone who might be working a cubicle down from you or in the welding bay on the other side of the workshop. 

Above ProtectionAbove Protection (Imperfect Heroes #1) by C.J. Pinard, contemporary military/bad-boy romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: He’s bearded, angry, highly trained, and has a job to do.
She’s the damsel in distress who’s smarter than she looks, and doesn’t want anyone’s help.
Could it be they both need something neither will admit to? Fate fuelled by the laws of attraction may just decide for them.

DUKE
I didn’t ask for this. I was just doing my job, and they have the nerve to put me on a Witness Protection detail? This is crap. I’ll do my assignment, then go back to my job and what I love – kicking ass and taking names. I hadn’t spent 6 years in the Marine Corps to be put on babysitting duty once I’d joined the FBI. The witness they assigned me to, Rayanne, is an annoying, brainless blonde with a sassy mouth and a body that belonged on a website you had to pay to access. Not that I noticed or anything.

RAYANNE
I can look after myself. I don’t need anyone’s help, and the government is being ridiculous for putting me in the Witness Protection Program. I’ll testify against my former bosses and then go back to my life as a single girl in the big city. I love my career as a paralegal, and once this Neanderthal they’d assigned to babysit me was out of my life, I’ll go back to it. I just wish he wasn’t so easy on the eyes. The beard, hard body, and that voice. Why couldn’t they have sent me someone ugly – and nice? Because Duke is neither of those things.

Vampires of Maze 2Vampires of Maze Part 2 (Beautiful Immortals, series 2) by Tim O’Rourke, paranormal thriller adventure, mystery, romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: From Tim O’Rourke #1 bestselling author of ‘Werewolves of Shade’ (Beautiful Immortals Series One) comes ‘Vampires of Maze’ (Beautiful Immortals Series Two) a vampire and werewolf romance with a twist.

Witch, Julia Miller, has been sent by the Wicce to bring an end to the war that rages between the Beautiful Immortals. Joining a pack of werewolves, Julia must travel with them to a land unknown to her. Here she will learn the horrifying truth about the dark secrets hidden in the town of Maze.

To stay alive, Julia will not only have to figure out who to trust but also who to love. For Julia’s worst nightmares are about to get a whole lot more terrifying as she heads into the war raging between the vampires and werewolves where even her own magic abilities won’t be able to protect her.

Note: This ends on an unbearable cliff-hanger. Part Three will be published within the next few weeks.

For readers 16+

**REVIEW** Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #6) by Tim O’Rourke

Tim O’Rourke’s Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals series 1, books 1-6) has been such a brilliant read. With one book being released each month, Tim has surely kept us all on our toes with some fantastic cliff hangers. Now the last book of the first series is available, and so for those that haven’t read this series yet, this is the perfect opportunity for you to read all six books in one go, and I will warn you now – you won’t be able to put these down for a second!

Werewolves of Shade (Part Six) (Beautiful Immortals Series Book 6)Title: Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #6)

Author: Tim O’Rourke

Genre: Paranormal fantasy

Date released: June 14th, 2015

Released by: Ravenwoodgreys

Length: 61 pages

Blurb: From Tim O’Rourke #1 bestselling author of ‘The Kiera Hudson Series’ comes ‘Werewolves of Shade’ a werewolf romance with a twist.

When the entire population of Shade go missing, investigative reporter Mila Watson knows this could be the big break she has been waiting for. Setting off into the mountains to the village of Shade, Mila soon learns that the village isn’t as deserted as she first believed it to be and that creatures lurk in the shades…

‘Werewolves of Shade’ (Part Six)

Note: This ends in a cliff-hanger. Part Seven will be published within the next few weeks.

For readers 16+

REVIEW

Picking up from where we left off in Werewolves of Shade (part 5), Mila is faced with walking straight into vampires that are now in Shade. With Calix, Rush, Rea and Trent by her side, Mila has to pluck up the courage and move swiftly in fighting off the vampires if she is to live and help protect her new friends. This is all quite a shock to Mila who was told that a witch had ended the war between the werewolves and vampires. Now, it appears that not everything was quite what she thought.

There is also a slight niggle in Mila’s thoughts that she may not be being loyal to the right people. After managing to shoot at a vampire she begins to question who she should be helping. But Calix, Rush, Rea and Trent have never done anything to make her feel that she shouldn’t help them. After all, they gave her somewhere to live, a job and helped in protecting her and defending herself. Maybe staying in Maze would have been the safest option, but she was so desperate to find out what had happened to her parents, and was happy to prove her independence and being able to think for herself by going to Shade.

In the heat of the action, shouts and gunfire, Mila is taken by a vampire and tied to a wooden, pole where she believes she will be burned alive. After banging her head, she drifts in and out of consciousness, and therefore, initially, not fully alert to the danger that she is in. The reader really feels fearful for Mila as a way out doesn’t seem possible.

“Was I now going to be ripped to shreds…? Would Calix and the others later find me dead – with my throat torn out and drained of all my blood?”

During her time tied up, we have a flashback of when Mila was back in Maze, when her uncle used to be away from home for a few days, and she would spend time as a young teenager with her boyfriend, Flint. These moments highlight the relationship she had with both Flint and her uncle, and how life has changed for her recently. She knows for sure that although she cared for Flint, he is not the one she is in love with. And, regarding her uncle, she cannot be certain why he didn’t tell the truth about the Beautiful Immortals. Did he know himself? Surely he must?

The writing is absolutely flawless as the reader is gripped with every moment that passes. The action, adventure, mystery and some brutal moments make it a very striking read that you will not forget in a hurry. But, as well as that, the reader also experiences every emotion there is when reading any O’Rourke story. The thrills and fear kick in, not to mention the rage that overcomes Mila during the gunfight at the beginning. There is also a comment from Calix that made me laugh that I’ll leave you to find!

This final instalment of the Beautiful Immortals series 1 holds many revelations as a great deal comes to light. Some I was half expecting but then others were a complete surprise, with a fantastic twist at the end. It is a brilliant end to the series as Tim O’Rourke loves to gobsmack his readers and leave them waiting for more…

A copy of Werewolves of Shade (Part 6) (Beautiful Immortals series 1) was provided by the author in return for an honest and fair review.

It is now available at Amazon UK and Amazon US.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

Links to my reviews of previous instalments :-

Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #1) – short story

Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #2) – short story

Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #3) – short story

Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #4) – short story

Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #5) – short story

**TRAIL OF DEAD (THE INCARNATE SERIES #2), by Cristy Rey ~ BLOG TOUR AND REVIEW

The Pastophori of Iset has set a trap for the Incarnate…only she doesn’t know it….

Trail of Dead (Incarnate #2), by Cristy Rey

Book Blurb

ToD Amazon GR SW

The Pastophori of Iset has set a trap for the Incarnate…only she doesn’t know it.

Burned out from being on the road again, a directionless Sunday finds herself inexplicably drawn to Salt Lake City. There she finds herself in a curious state. For the first time in her life, Sunday feels normal. She can walk around free of anxiety that she will be set-off by her inhuman sensitivity. She can be intimate without overheating. Are the days of the Incarnate finally behind her?

Cyrus has not handled losing Sunday well. For eight months, the werewolf has been a shadow of himself. His pack is concerned and his closest friend, Marcus, believes that Cyrus is in danger of being lost to his humanity. When their Alpha confesses that the Pastophori of Iset has set a trap for Sunday, Cyrus goes into full-gear trying to get her out of it…but he has to find her first.

Goodreads

 Purchase Links

Amazon US | Amazon UK | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

 

Halloween dark scenery with naked trees, full moon and clouds

Excerpt

With a sharp nod to Cyrus, Stephen took a step back and again made his way to his seat. Cyrus claimed the seat Marcus vacated, muscles taut and ready to spring into action. It took everything to abate the firestorm that brewed in him. The loss of Sunday, a threat to Marcus, and the rising wolf that threatened to take over if Cyrus didn’t get himself in check.

“I think Marcus appreciates the situation.”

“Do you, Marcus?” Stephen asked. The younger wolf now stood with his hands in his pockets and his head lowered, refusing to direct his gaze to his leader.

“I do, Stephen, but, respectfully, I think it doesn’t matter.”

“What makes you think you can find her and, even if you did, the Incarnate would go with you willingly?”

“She came with us willingly before.”

“But she didn’t come with you willingly the last time, and correct me if I’m remembering things wrong, but you stated that time she put you on your ass and turned the lights out on you for an entire day to prove just how unwilling she was to be recaptured.” Stephen leaned up on his elbows and shifted forward in his chair. “You think you cannot only find her this time, but get her to agree to going with you? Because, Cyrus, I want to be clear on this. She’s going to have to come with you for this to work.”

Cyrus nodded, and Stephen asked Marcus the same question.

“I don’t think it’s going to be that easy,” Marcus admitted. “But I think it’s worth attempting. At the very least, it gives Cyrus another shot with her, and I’m not sure he’ll stay with us long unless he gets at least that.”

The situation was clear. He’d been volatile since she’d absconded and left him behind, and only by confronting her could the situation be resolved. Cyrus wouldn’t be the first werewolf to leave behind humanity and choose to live out his days in wolf form. Once he made that fateful decision, his humanity would be lost forever. He wouldn’t come back. No one did. He would live out his days in the wild and he would do so in misery, alone.

“Is that accurate?” Stephen asked. There was no mistaking to whom he directed the question.

“Yes,” Cyrus answered.

The word stewed in the room while the three men quietly considered what it meant. Cyrus’s admission was deeply felt, and Stephen sighed heavily and brought his hands to cover his face, shaking his head and mumbling unintelligibly into them.

“So what do you want me to do?”

“I want a meeting with the cult leaders,” Cyrus replied.

Dropping back against the chair, he tucked his chin, beard brushing over chest. All the possible consequences of this action played out in his mind. He might not have admitted it to Marcus, even after Marcus had made his intentions known, but he’d fantasized about the millions of ways he could find Sunday again. Finally, he was opening up about them with Stephen, possibly the only person who could enable their reality.

“The cult has ceased all contracts regarding the capture and retrieval of the Incarnate.”

“Why?” Marcus asked, now inching closer to the table where the two men sat.

“Like I said earlier, Cyrus is the best and everyone knows it. He was the most dedicated to the Incarnate’s case and he is the one with the most experience with her. Since the witch’s flock was all but exterminated when she destroyed the main house, information about her is in short supply.”

“What does the cult know about Sunday that we don’t?” Cyrus interjected.

“Good question,” Stephen admitted with a nod. “It is my understanding that the Pastophori has found another way of trapping her.”

My Personal Review

Dark and Suspenseful Urban Fantasy Read!

Please note that this review contains some spoilers  for readers who have not read book #1 in the series, Taking Back Sunday (click title for my review).

If you are not already on board with the Incarnate Series by Cristy Rey then hop on now and ready yourself for a fantastic dark urban fantasy read! Trail of Dead, book #2 in the series, pulses with arcane magic, violence, psychological torment and twisted evil, but it also explores the bonds of friendship, love and self-sacrifice.

After giving Cyrus the slip at the end of the previous novel, Sunday is again on the run, striving to come to terms with her powerful and oftentimes destructive powers. She is drawn to Salt Lake City, where a feeling of calmness descends upon her and she feels like she has a chance at normality. She makes friends with a woman called Deborah and embarks on a rewarding social life.

Nevertheless the Pastophori have set a trap for Sunday that she unknowingly all but sleepwalks into. This trap may not only cost Sunday her freedom and even her life but also that of an innocent teenager. The dark magic and madness of another, who has awaited the arrival of Sunday for a long time finally comes into play.

At the same time Cyrus, in Alaska with his pack, is sinking deeper into depression following Sunday’s desertion. Fearing what will happen if he is not reunited with Sunday and hearing that she is in danger, he once again seeks her out. Accompanied by fellow wolves Marcus and Angel, Cyrus soon picks up her scent. But will he be too late to save her from the trap and the fate that the Pastophori have in store for her? Will Sunday welcome him back? And above all will she remain with him? Their relationship is a complex one and they have much to come to terms with.

Once again I LOVED the characters in this novel. I really felt for Cyrus, the tortured alpha male werewolf, who cannot survive without his mate. He struggles with the knowledge that she left him, yet once he realises she is in danger NOTHING will keep him from saving her. I also enjoyed finding out more about Marcus and Angel and the new characters introduced in this novel. The members of the Pastophori are truly evil and I was on the edge of my seat hoping against hope that they did not realise their twisted objectives!

I emphasised with Sunday and was happy for her when she begins to live a normal life in Salt Lake City. Yet alarm bells began to ring as her sense of self as well as her powers begin to wane. Events conspire to work against her and people are not always what they seem.  Sunday can only save herself and others if she can break free of the trap that has closed in around her and for once she cannot do this alone. I will not divulge any more of this awesome plot, but just urge you to give this highly original and entertaining series a go – you will not be disappointed!

I received a copy of this novel from the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Taking Back Sunday (Incarnate #1)

tbs

After five years on the run, Sunday has finally settled into a seemingly normal life in Columbia, South Carolina. What her two best friends don’t know is that Sunday has a secret past. She is the Incarnate, a conduit of mystical energy transcendent of the mundane and the divine. For most of her life, she served under Bernadette, the most powerful witch in the Northwest. Her power is terrifying, and what she remembers of her past—and what she doesn’t—haunts her. In the year that she’s been attempting to be anything but the Incarnate, Sunday has fought her abilities tooth and nail, but it’s been worth it. When Sunday joins her friends’ coven for an innocent gathering, Sunday discovers a darkness hidden beneath the blanket of the coven’s magic and she is determined to find out who is behind it and what she has planned.

For the last four years, Cyrus has been the point man on the contract to recapture the Incarnate and deliver her to the Pastophori of Iset. A gifted tracker and a fearless werewolf, he harbors a wild, inexplicable passion for the Incarnate that has driven him to hunt her. He was one of the original captors that brought her to Bernadette when his obsession with her began. Having found her, Cyrus and his pack find themselves torn between two objectives: take her by force and deliver her to yet another group of fanatics, or help her uncover the traitor among her coven.

Goodreads

Purchase Links

Amazon US | Amazon UK | B&N | Kobo

About this Author

Cristy Rey is the author of the romantic urban fantasy Incarnate series. Taking Back Sunday, Trail of Dead, and the prequel novelette, Edge of Seventeen, were released in 2014. The third full-length installment, Wolf Parade, will be released in 2015. She also writes and publishes unconventional romantic women’s fiction. Her first standalone, Weeping Angels, is available now, and her second, Heart Grow Fonder, will be out in winter 2014/2015.

Cristy lives in Miami, FL where she is a reader and writer most of the time, and a knitter much less of the time than she was six months before she took up writing again. She writes the books that she likes to read. She describes her writing style as riot grrrl Jane Austen sprinkled with a little magic. There’s always a killer soundtrack running in the background of her novels – all you need to do is turn to the playlist to know what’s up.

Find Cristy Rey Online

Cristy’s website Sign up for Cristy’s monthly updates | Facebook | Goodreads | Twitter | Signed Paperbacks | Google + | Youtube

Taking Back Sunday, The Incarnate Series # 1, by Cristy Moran

 ~ REVIEW TIME ~

 Witches, Werewolves and Wild Passion!

TBS Banner FB (1)

We are thrilled to be participating in the Blog Tour featuring a talented new author Cristy Moran, who has recently published, Taking Back Sunday, book one of The Incarnate Series, an exciting urban fantasy/paranormal romance. Scroll down to read the book blurb, check out our review and find out about the author.

Book Blurb

After five years on the run, Sunday has finally settled into a seemingly normal life in Columbia, South Carolina. What her two best friends don’t know is that Sunday has a secret past. She is the Incarnate, a conduit of mystical energy transcendent of the mundane and the divine. For most of her life, she served under Bernadette, the most powerful witch in the Northwest. Her power is terrifying, and what she remembers of her past—and what she doesn’t—haunts her. In the year that she’s been attempting to be anything but the Incarnate, Sunday has fought her abilities tooth and nail, but it’s been worth it. When Sunday joins her friends’ coven for an innocent gathering, Sunday discovers a darkness hidden beneath the blanket of the coven’s magic and she is determined to find out who is behind it and what she has planned. For the last four years, Cyrus has been the point man on the contract to recapture the Incarnate and deliver her to the Pastophori of Iset. A gifted tracker and a fearless werewolf, he harbors a wild, inexplicable passion for the Incarnate that has driven him to hunt her. He was one of the original captors that brought her to Bernadette when his obsession with her began. Having found her, Cyrus and his pack find themselves torn between two objectives: take her by force and deliver her to yet another group of fanatics, or help her uncover the traitor among her coven.

TBS Cover (1)

My Review

Witches, Werewolves and Wild Passion!

I found this to be a fast-paced, suspenseful and romantic read that will appeal to fans of urban fantasy and paranormal romance alike. The plot contains a thrilling combination of powerful magic, passion, obsession and hidden agendas!

Sunday wants no part of being the Incarnate. She only has fractured memories of the past, but knows that it was full of violence at the hands of the witch Bernadette, who harnessed Sunday’s powers for her own ends, giving Sunday a heartless reputation. I enjoyed the pivotal scene where Sunday encounters the werewolf Cyus and the moment their instant mutual attraction rocks their respective worlds. Something about Cyrus compels Sunday’s memories to resurface and she realises that Cyrus has been deceiving her and cannot be trusted. I really felt for Sunday when it dawns on her that the ordinary life she has been living with her two friends this past year is over. Her identity as the Incarnate has been compromised and the powers she possesses, made even more unstable by the trauma of her memories resurfacing, threaten to explode and harm those around her.

I admired Sunday’s determination to keep her friends safe and destroy the evil that endangers them, whilst avoiding capture from Cyrus and his band of werewolves. This sets the scene for a thrilling tale not only involving Sunday, the Incarnate, with god-like powers, but werewolves, witches and other supernatural entities who struggle for power and dominance. Sunday puts herself at risk as she exposes her hidden talents and is eventually compelled to work with Cyrus and his band of werewolves who may betray her at any moment.

I loved the tortured characters of Sunday and Cyrus. The connection between them is instant and undeniable and the passion intense in some hot scenes. Cyrus is troubled by the role he played in Sunday’s capture as a teenager and his conflicted feelings towards her. He is torn between his desire to protect Sunday and loyalty to his pack who has tasked him to once again capture her and deliver her to those who would use Sunday for their own ends. Sunday is a powerful and tortured heroine. Her use and abuse by the witch Bernadette brought tears to my eyes and are a constant source of torment, as is the guilt that Sunday harbours over the tasks that Bernadette used Sunday and her powers to carry out. Sunday’s magic is strong and can reach earth shattering proportions and she assumes an almost mystical quality when the Incarnate within her rises to the surface. Even Cyrus, a powerful werewolf, is in awe of her at such moments.

The descriptions of magic performed by Sunday and other characters are powerful and intense and the author’s depictions of the rituals, spells and mystical paraphernalia make for an entertaining read. I recommend the book to readers of both urban fantasy and paranormal romance, who like tales of strong and passionate tortured heroes and heroines, with lots of conflict, suspense and adventure.

Reviewed by Tina Williams

A copy of this book was provided for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Cover design by Okay Creations

Photography by K Keeton Designs

Editing and Formatting by Indie Express

About the Author

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Cristy Moran lives in Miami, FL. She is a college librarian some of the time, a reader and writer most of the time, and a knitter much less of the time than she was six months before she took up writing again. She’s also a nerd and a geek, and proud to be.

Cristy writes the books that she likes to read. Her women are strong and out-spoken and her men run the gamut. Love stories abound in Cristy’s work because, really, aren’t love stories the best? There’s always a killer soundtrack running in the background of her novels – all you need to do is turn to the playlist to know what’s up.

 Facebook https://www.facebook.com/cristywrites

Website http://www.cristyrey.com/

Goodreads http://bit.ly/1iD1Ujy

Amazon http://amzn.to/1g0t4kf

Smashwords http://bit.ly/OBKwRb

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Dark Indiscretions, by Shakuita Johnson

Dark Indiscretions Book cover

Fun and Fast Paced Urban Fantasy!

Adult content

Dark Indiscretions is a fun read, containing a fresh take on the world of supernatural beings. Although it contains some dark themes, it is also full of humour, feisty females, alpha males and characters whom the reader grows to love despite their many flaws. Due to the inclusion of some hot love making, including m/m scenes, the book is an adult read.

Book Blurb (summary)

What happens when your family is scarier than any nightmare and you don’t want to follow in their footsteps? Do you stay or rebel and have them turn on you? Jennifer Johnston experiences first hand why whispers are spoken in the dark about her species’ being evil when she was just a century old. What should have been another family argument over why she didn’t want to keep the bloodlines “pure” by marrying her brother turned into a nightmare and left her with more than tortured memories.

Jackson Dawls and Taylor Durham have been pack mates, best friends, and the other’s mate for as long as they could remember. A deadly species all their own but even they feared Mystics and their cruel and barbaric ways, but unforeseen circumstances bring them face to face with not one but a few. Will their lives be in danger or is something great and unexpected awaiting them?   They also have to stay under the radar of the human society that is set out to destroy those they believe to be a danger to mankind.

When the three meet long ago secrets are brought to the light. Not only do they Jackson, Taylor and Jenny have to learn to get along with each other because they are fated mates, but someone is stalking Jennifer and performing sinister acts.  Jennifer must seek guidance from old acquaintances and form unexpected alliances. She is met with riddles and startling revelations that she never would have imagined possible.

My Review

In Dark Indiscretions supernatural beings co-exist with human kind. Jennifer Johnston, the heroine, is a Mystic (a Vampyra Shapeshifting Witch). Jennifer is not typical of her race, who take pleasure in sadistic behaviour and who are regarded as evil by other supernatural beings. Instead, she has a conscience and does her utmost to resist the pull of the evil that nevertheless resides within her. Despite this, she is capable of great evil if the need arises.

Jennifer’s battle to go against the wishes of her family and not engage in an incestuous relationship sets the scene for the events in this novel. Even when she believes that she has escaped the evil that is her family she finds herself being stalked unrelentlessly by an unknown enemy. This happens at the same time that she discovers that instead of one fated mate she is ‘blessed’ with two, who happen to be Dylias, werewolves. Not only that but her mates, Jackson and Taylor, have themselves been mated for a long time and are deeply committed to each other. Who is staking Jennifer and how can she escape from her past, which still haunts her? Also will Jackson and Taylor find room for Jennifer and how will they cope with being mated to a Mystic, a race they despise?

There is much violence, danger and suspense in the novel, as Jennifer discovers the identity of her stalker and with the aid of Jackson, Taylor and others seek to destroy him before he destroys someone very dear to her. However, he is not going down without a fight. Jennifer and her mates must seek the help of others to succeed and we are introduced to a number of other characters as the tale plays out. There is also plenty of snarky humour and a number of smoking hot lovemaking scenes, notably between Jackson and Taylor, which I loved.

I enjoyed the character of Jennifer, the heroine. Although strong, she does struggle with the potential for evil that resides within her and also experiences trauma from past events. Krista, the other Mystic we are introduced to his novel, finds it far more difficult to curb her race’s natural instincts and it will be interesting to see how the author takes her story forward. It is Jackson and Taylor who stole the show for me however, as they are just so yummy! I enjoyed their reaction when they found out that Jennifer was their mate and I hope the author will explore the dynamics of how their existing relationship accommodates Jennifer a little more in the next instalment.

I found Dark Indiscretions to be a promising start to a new series. I liked how the author had taken the vampire myth and put her own spin on it and I am looking forward to reading Monsters Unleashed, the forthcoming novel.  I recommend this series to readers of Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance.

Reviewed by Tina Williams

A copy of this book was given to me by the author for the purpose of a fair and honest review.

Buy Links:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Dark-Indiscretions-Shakuita-Johnson-ebook/dp/B00H5DODE4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1386381480&sr=8-1&keywords=dark+indiscretions

Connect with the Author:

Blog: http://www.dark-indiscretions.com

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/b3arcat26/

Facebook Book Series page: http://www.facebook.com/darkindiscretions

Hallows End, A Sarah Chase Novel, Part One of the Prophecy Trilogy, by Leo Craven

Thrilling and Addictive Dark Urban Fantasy! 

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Leo Craven has a talent for original writing, which enters the realms of dark fantasy, horror, sci-fi and the paranormal. His eclectic works can be sampled on his website (scroll down to the section entitled ‘Connect with the Author’ for the link). Hallows End is his first novel, published in January. It is not only a Dark Urban Fantasy, with a kick -ass heroine and a fantastic cast of magical and paranormal creatures, but also contains a great deal of mystery and suspense, which links past events on Earth to the present in what I found to be an addictive and thrilling read!

Book Blurb

In the mysterious town of Hallows End, a vigilante police detective, Sarah Chase, finds herself immersed in a world where myth and legend are reality. As Sarah discovers the secrets of the town and its residents, she also learns of her family’s ties to an ancient prophecy that could soon determine the fate of all humans and ‘immortals’. A suspenseful thrill-ride that builds toward a shocking climax, the first book of the “Prophecy Trilogy” will leave the reader eagerly anticipating Sarah Chase’s next adventure.

My Review

Hallows End is a fabulous first instalment to Leo Craven’s Prophecy Trilogy. The heroine, Sarah Chase, a police detective, is aware of the existence of creatures such as werewolves and vampires and hunts these monsters down to prevent their wanton destruction of human life. Whilst in hot pursuit of a werewolf suspect, she is compelled to enter the mysterious town of Hallows End, where she finds that werewolves and vampires are just the tip of the iceberg. Sarah meets the enigmatic Dr Nemitz and makes the acquaintance of many other mysterious characters and she very soon realises that it is no accident that she was drawn to Hallows End.

An ancient prophecy is revealed to her and she learns that a great evil strives to enslave the human race. Sarah makes a number of startling discoveries, not least about her past and will have to decide where her loyalties lie. I will not reveal any more about the plot – suffice to say that it sucked me in completely!

Sarah is a strong heroine who can hold her own in a fight. She is physically and mentally fit and willing to face danger to achieve her goals. She is also  a modern, sexually liberated woman who knows how to satisfy her needs! It will be interesting to see how she will fare in subsequent instalments when faced with creatures imbued with great magic and evil. I am intrigued by her past and although we are given snippets of it throughout the novel, I am interested in learning more about what makes her tick in future instalments. We are introduced to a number of other characters as the plot progresses, some of them on the side of good, some who are allied with evil and others who have their own agendas. All of these characters are more than what they appear to be and play a key role in the tale. The novel becomes darker and more mysterious as it progresses as Sarah’s choices and the actions of others bear fruit and the extent of the evil that exists is revealed.

Although the focus of the tale is in the present day world, I loved how the author devoted whole chapters here and there to key events and characters in the past, notably those dealing with lord Artair, his part in the prophecy and his battles and those of his men, with evil. I also liked how the author referenced ancient myths, magic and legends in creating the world. The novel is a dark fantasy and there are bloody and violent scenes throughout. The scenes are vivid and well described and I could easily imagine them playing out in my head.

All in all Hallows End is a thrilling and entertaining read, which I found difficult to put down and I recommend it to lovers of Urban Fantasy and paranormal reads. I am looking forward to reading the next instalment!

Reviewed by Tina Williams

Connect with the Author

http://leocraven.com/

https://www.facebook.com/leo.craven

Purchase Links – book now available in e-book and paperback

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hallows-End-Sarah-Chase-Craven-ebook/dp/B00HDIR29O

http://www.amazon.com/Hallows-End-Sarah-Chase-Craven-ebook/dp/B00HDIR29O