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** Jared (River Pack Wolves #3) by Alisa Woods

If you are a fan of shifter paranormals with plenty of heat, action and romance then you REALLY need to pick up an Alisa Woods book. With her already successful NA short story series’, True Alpha and Dark Alpha, River Pack Wolves is the author’s full story, third series. Each story of the River Pack Wolves can be read as a stand alone, but as a HUGE fan I would recommend that Jaxson, Jace and Jared be read consecutively.

The River Pack Wolves series consists of three full-length stories, with each individual book based on a River brother and their personal romance. However, there is a running theme throughout the series whereby shifters are going missing, being abducted by the government and military to be experimented on, thus stirring fear and anger amongst the shifter community that the River pack decide to take on themselves!

Jared (River Pack Wolves #3)Title: Jared (River Pack Wolves #3)

Author: Alisa Woods

Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance

Release date: October 29th, 2015

Released by: Sworn Secrets Publishing

Length: 174 pages

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.

AFTER THE RIVER BROTHERS: Look for the Wilding Pack Wolves series to start soon!

REVIEW ***** (5* RATING)

JARED is a fantastic ending to the fast-paced action and HOT romance shifter series, River Pack Wolves. Alisa Woods‘ story openings are usually gripping from the beginning, and Jared is no different; opening the story in a suspenseful manner with ex-Marine Jared at the ready to assassinate Senator Krepky, an anti-shifter politician on the brink of setting out new legislation for all shifters to register.

“It didn’t take a genius to figure out where that was going. Not only would it be stupid-easy for the government to round up shifters, but shifter-owned companies like the private security firm Jared owned with his brothers, Riverwise, would go out of business.”

Jared is a broken shifter, seeing himself only as a killer. Although his killing was for his country during his time in the Marines, it is really all he knows. He has found it difficult to adjust to civilian life, lost his mate, and keeps himself to himself. Killing Senator Krepky, who is also believed to be behind shifter abductions and an experimental program, isn’t worth thinking twice about.

However, Jared notices the Senator arguing with a young lady, the Senator’s daughter, and Jared decides to wait until the Senator is alone before pulling the trigger. Keeping eyes on them both at all times, there is plenty of suspense during these first few pages. The Senator’s daughter leaves the room annoyed, and as Jared follows her with his eyes to ensure she is out of the way… she shifts!

I loved this turn of events; the way it shocks Jared. The way in which the author has written this scene makes it feel like your reading in first person, when the story is actually written in third. The way in which she describes what he is seeing, what his reactions are is very well written and described. Even though Jared has his chance to prevent the Senator, he is stunned by Miss. Krepky and thoughts race through his mind as he follows her wolf, leaving Senator Krepky in his office with no knowledge of what his own daughter is, or that he was about to be assassinated.

Grace Krepky has kept her shifting a secret from her anti-shifter father. She has worked her way to becoming her father’s Campaign Manager and enjoys her work. However, fully aware of the new shifter legislation that her father is about to bring in, she hopes to try and talk him out of it. Keeping her secret has meant that she has little knowledge of shifter life, and has nobody to confide in or talk to. And, there’s also the worry of what her father will do if, or when, he finds out what she is.

The meeting between Jared and Grace provides both of them with new possibilities. Jared may have a way to prevent the new legislation, without needing to kill the Senator, if only Grace could confide in her father what she really is and maybe the love for his daughter will change his whole perspective. Meanwhile, Grace would finally have somebody to teach her shifter ways, help her be her most natural self, and having someone to talk to. Thus, making life so much easier.

Not only do they have a chance of these, but natural instinct from their inner-wolves attract each other in a way so deep that neither of them had expected. The physical attraction, the protectiveness of each other – Jared emotionally, Grace both physical and emotional, and sheer desire all unite to create a very powerful and suspenseful romance.

A copy of Jared (River Pack Wolves #3) was provided by the author in return for a fair and honest review.

You can purchase JARED at Amazon US and Amazon UK.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

You can also check out our review of book 1 in the River Pack trilogy – JAXSON and book 2 – JACE

Jaxson (River Pack Wolves 1) - New Adult Paranormal RomanceJace (River Pack Wolves 2) for Kindle_28

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can also check out our reviews of Alisa Woods’s True Alpha and Dark Alpha series:-

Desired (True Alpha #1) – short story

Guarded (True Alpha #2) – short story

Hunted (True Alpha #3) – short story

Captured (True Alpha #4) – short story

Sacrificed (True Alpha #5) – short story

Claimed (True Alpha #6) – short story

A True Alpha Christmas – novella – stand alone short story

Torment (Dark Alpha #1) – short story

Pleasure (Dark Alpha #2) – short story

Deception (Dark Alpha #3) – short story

Escape (Dark Alpha #4) – short story

Penance (Dark Alpha #5) – short story

Loved (Dark Alpha #6) – short story

Review Round-Up for our October reads

12087236_10154263570968696_5735409078405643180_oDear readers, we hope that you have enjoyed these autumn months, and that you celebrated Halloween in style. It would be great to see your Halloween photo’s!! This was my attempt (right) at being a vampiress at a much-loved friend’s birthday party – a friend who is absolutely hooked on Halloween, and then celebrated her birthday in style by going to New York and visiting Central Park at this real beautiful time of year!

And, how time seems to be sprinting by this year, with Thanksgiving only a few days away, and Christmas a few weeks!

During October we had 12 fab reads to review for you from Tim O’Rourke‘s Beautiful Immortals series 2 release to international best-selling author Catherine McKenzie‘s Smoke. We had a cheeky contemporary comedy horror short with Deborah Melanie‘s Vivian’s Vampire and the dark horror/sci-fi of J.G. Clay‘s Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor. Not to mention the many romances and paranormals in between. We hope you enjoy our selection of reads, as always.

Much love.

Caroline & Tina ❤

(As always, please click on the title and author for our full review)

Living the DreamLiving the Dream by Celia J. Anderson, contemporary romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: When dreams and reality crash and mingle, escape can be the hardest challenge of all.

Longing to get away from her troubled marriage, the opportunity to cross America by train seems like a dream come true for Vita Craythorne. But charismatic travel agent Moriarty Miles has other ideas; by replacing their mutual friend Jack on the trip, Vita has unwittingly set herself up as a guinea pig for Moriarty’s mind-blowing and potentially dangerous virtual-travelling project. His plan is to give clients the holiday of a lifetime without ever having to leave the comfort of their own homes. It’s exciting. It’s time-saving. It’s innovative. Maybe this trip is just what Vita needs? That is, if she can avoid becoming trapped inside her own, miraculous dream world.

Vampires of Maze 1Vampires of Maze (Beautiful Immortals, Series 2, Book 1) by Tim O’Rourke, paranormal romance, thriller adventure (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.

Into the UnknowmInto the Unknown by Lorna Peel, historical romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: London on 3 September 1939 is in upheaval. War is inevitable. Into this turmoil steps Kate Sheridan newly arrived from Ireland to live with her aunt and uncle and look for work. When she meets Flight Lieutenant Charlie Butler sparks fly, but he is a notorious womaniser. Should she ignore all the warnings and get involved with a ladies man whose life will be in daily danger?

Charlie Butler has no intention of getting involved with a woman. But when he meets Kate his resolve is shattered. Should he allow his heart to rule his head and fall for a nineteen-year-old Irish girl while there is a war to fight?

Private conflicts and personal doubts are soon overshadowed. Will the horrors of total war bring Kate and Charlie together or tear them apart?

SmokeSmoke by Catherine McKenzie, contemporary women’s fiction, mystery drama, chicklit (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: From the internationally bestselling author Catherine McKenzie comes an evocative tale of two women navigating the secrets and lies at the heart of a wildfire threatening their town.

After a decade-long career combating wildfires, Elizabeth has traded in her former life for a quieter one with her husband. Now she works as the local arson investigator in a beautiful, quaint town in the Rockies. But that tranquil life vanishes when she and her husband agree to divorce and a fire in nearby Cooper Basin begins to spread rapidly. For Elizabeth, containing a raging wildfire is easier than accepting that her marriage has failed.

For Elizabeth’s ex-friend Mindy, who feels disconnected from her husband and teenage children, the fire represents a chance to find a new purpose: helping a man who has lost his home to the blaze. But her faith is shattered by a shocking accusation.

As the encroaching inferno threatens the town’s residents, Elizabeth and Mindy must discover what will be lost in the fire, and what will be saved.

White HeatWhite Heat by Serge de Moliere, erotic romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: A frigid wilderness. A blazing encounter.

In the frigid wilderness of Northern Canada, Carol treks through the snow, desperate to escape her violent and obsessed husband, Dugan. Unprepared for the harsh conditions, she soon finds herself trapped in the ice. She’s rescued by Josh, a loner who has fled society for his own reasons, and he brings her to his isolated cabin.

Carol and Josh are trapped together in the cabin as a snowstorm rages outside. Soon neither of them can fight their building desire, giving in to the temptation of shared heat and intimacy. Josh is nothing like the man Carol fled. He brings out feelings in her she’d long since suppressed.

But Dugan is hunting for her, and he plans to have his revenge on any man who dares share her company…

prettyPretty When You Cry (Stripped #3) by Skye Warren, dark erotic romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: A new dark romance novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Wanderlust and Prisoner…

I came from a place of dirt floors and holy scriptures. They told me the world outside was full of sin, and the first night I escape, I find out it’s true. Ivan saves me, but he does more than that. He takes me. He makes me his own girl.

My conditioning runs too deep. Ivan sees what I am.

That’s the thing about showing a mouse to a cat. He wants to play. And it’s terrifying, even for me. Because the only thing darker than my past is his.

Jace (River Pack Wolves 2) for Kindle_28Jace (River Pack Wolves #2) by Alisa Woods, NA paranormal romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: His wolf is out of control. She’s a wild thing that won’t be tamed.
Ex-Army Specialist Jace River has a lock on his bedroom door, but it’s not to keep anyone out; it’s to keep his nightmares from breaking loose. His wolf is an out-of-control killer, which means he can never risk shifting, never truly be part of his pack, and definitely never take a mate.

Piper Wilding works for the Army as a civilian, traveling the world for her work in counterintelligence and fighting the bad guys while bedding down the good ones. The best part? It keeps her far from her asshole father in Seattle, the rest of the Wilding pack, and the pressure to take a mate. Settling down isn’t her thing, and after what happened to her mother, Piper vowed she would never be tied down by magic or men again.

While Jace’s wolf keeps him Sleepless in Seattle, Piper returns home to find her missing kid brother. When she breaks into the River brother’s safehouse, sparks fly and claws come out. Her sexy skills threaten to bring out Jace’s wolf, and Jace’s good-guy hotness reminds Piper how tempting shifter men can be. They’re like fire and gasoline, and as they race to find Piper’s brother, the heat threatens to burn down all their carefully constructed walls. But falling in love has never been so dangerous—and being together means taking risks that neither might survive.

Jace is a complete novel with HEA, the second 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 sexy spy girls. Only readers over 18 should dive into the deliciously hot world of the River brothers.

BrakeBrake (The Redline Series #3) by Skye Callahan, dark romantic suspense (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Bitter feud between brothers, Colt and Devlin, speeds out of control.

From Colt’s pawn to Devlin’s captive, Aubrey is caught even deeper in their pact to destroy one another. Imprisoned in darkness, she fights for her life–and her sanity. Her only hope is a cocky and sadistic car thief who is already wrestling with his own demons.

Colt swore he’d never end up in this place again. That he’d never be held captive to heroin or rendered helpless by his brother to watch as another life is destroyed. He’s ready to tear the city apart to find Aubrey, but that’s only if his own mind doesn’t tear him apart first.

Lines have been crossed. Promises broken. Souls shattered. And the worst has only begun.

Note: If you’re looking for rainbows, butterflies, and happy endings coated in chocolate and caramel, turn back now! This story deals with dark themes and intense situations that aren’t suitable for sensitive readers. If you’re looking for an intense roller coaster of emotions and situations that will warp your sense of right and wrong and drag you through the debauched underworld of crime and deceit, then you’re in the right place.

This is a work of serial fiction, so it will be released in distinct parts with no resolute ending until the end of the series.

Watcher Lotus's Journey 2 cj pinardWatcher (Daughter of Darkness): Lotus’s Journey Part II by C.J. Pinard, paranormal mystery romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: As hybrid vampire/faery Lotus’s journey has taken her from solving the vampire-committed murders in Denver to Las Vegas, she begins to learn a lot more about herself and the evil vampire of a father who has been searching for her for years. She has to make a decision on whether she’s going to run from Vlad or search for him and confront him as he continues to terrorize her dreams. She wonders if finding him will lead her to her faery mother, or if it will just lead to more death, destruction, and heartbreak.

With the relationship between her sexy neighbor, Drew, and her beginning to blossom, Lotus wonders if she should just give up the search and try to lead a normal life for once. She’s finally found a decent guy who is not only gorgeous, but seems to want to protect her. Something she’s never needed, but is now finding she wants. That is, until she finds out Drew’s got his own secrets.

This is part II of Lotus’s journey. Part III will be out in early 2016.

Dark CityDark City (Nick Harland, British Detective Series #4) by Bill Carson, dark crime (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: A must read for all those who like to sit uncomfortably on the edge of their seats.

Dark City is the fourth book in the Nick Harland detective series. In this one we follow him on his most perplexing and disturbing case to date, as he tracks down a serial killer from the past.
The book begins with an elderly man being released from prison, after serving seventeen years for a double murder. A few days after his release a young woman is snatched from outside a London pub.

The police seem to be dragging their heels, so the family of the missing girl call on the services of the tough, uncompromising ex murder squad detective, turned Private Investigator, Nick Harland. During his initial investigation another girl suddenly goes missing, he then gets a tip off that Charles Thorpe had just been released from prison. Nick knows the killer, as he was the detective who put him behind bars when he was a detective in the murder squad. And so the hunt is now on for Thorpe, and Nick will not rest until Thorpe is found, and he promises that Thorpe will pay the ultimate price for his crimes this time around.

Much more can’t be revealed, as it would give too much of the exciting plot away.
This is a fast paced dark and gritty story, packed with hard hitting action, highs and lows, intrigue and tension. This story has characters, that are good, and sometimes very, very bad. Dark City is crime noir in the truest sense.

Vivian's VampireVivian’s Vampire (short story) by Deborah Melanie, contemporary paranormal comedy horror romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: She’s got a scythe, a severed head and she’s looking for love.

Waitress Vivian Shawcross loves a costume party. When Halloween comes along, she can’t wait for the spooky fun to start. However, a mix up over her costume and a road diversion, are just two of the mini disasters she encounters en route to her ghostly night out. Stranded in a remote English village, isn’t her idea of fun, but when a gorgeous vampire is thrown into the equation, Vivian discovers that her fun night out has only just begun. 

Tales of Blood and SulphurTales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor by J.G. Clay, dark horror sci-fi (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: Eleven Tales steeped in Blood and reeking of Sulphur

There are cracks in the skin of Reality. Some are microscopic, others are as wide as a four-lane motorway. As the fault lines increase and widen, the door to our world shines like a beacon in the darkness, a warm and inviting sight to others beyond our understanding. When They cross over into our realm, The Tales begin……

A gambler taking one last desperate throw of the dice. A struggling writer making an unholy alliance. An eternal being fighting to stay alive in the financial capital of India. A man burdened with a terrible town secret. The Law Enforcers who must never cry. The End of Days live and direct from the rural heartland of England.

J.G. Clay takes you on a journey through the voids of Reality and into dark places where demons, mutants and inter-dimensional creatures taunt, taint and corrupt Humanity. Survival is not guaranteed, sanity is not assured and death lurks in every corner. These are the Tales of Blood and Sulphur: Apocalypse Minor; eleven twisted tales of terror and mayhem.

The blood is warm, the sulphur is burning, the tales will be told, the Apocalypse Minor is imminent!

**REVIEW** Jace (River Pack Wolves #2) by Alisa Woods

Alisa Woods has recently released her second novel in the River Pack Wolves series, JACE. NA fans of shifter paranormals will love this series with the uncountable scenes of action and HOT romance. Each story can be read as a stand alone, and each focuses on a brother from the River Pack.

Jace (River Pack Wolves 2) for Kindle_28Title: Jace (River Pack Wolves #2)

Author: Alisa Woods

Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance

Release date: October 5th, 2015

Released by: Sworn Secrets Publishing

Length: 170 pages

Blurb: His wolf is out of control. She’s a wild thing that won’t be tamed.
Ex-Army Specialist Jace River has a lock on his bedroom door, but it’s not to keep anyone out; it’s to keep his nightmares from breaking loose. His wolf is an out-of-control killer, which means he can never risk shifting, never truly be part of his pack, and definitely never take a mate.

Piper Wilding works for the Army as a civilian, traveling the world for her work in counterintelligence and fighting the bad guys while bedding down the good ones. The best part? It keeps her far from her asshole father in Seattle, the rest of the Wilding pack, and the pressure to take a mate. Settling down isn’t her thing, and after what happened to her mother, Piper vowed she would never be tied down by magic or men again.

While Jace’s wolf keeps him Sleepless in Seattle, Piper returns home to find her missing kid brother. When she breaks into the River brother’s safehouse, sparks fly and claws come out. Her sexy skills threaten to bring out Jace’s wolf, and Jace’s good-guy hotness reminds Piper how tempting shifter men can be. They’re like fire and gasoline, and as they race to find Piper’s brother, the heat threatens to burn down all their carefully constructed walls. But falling in love has never been so dangerous—and being together means taking risks that neither might survive.

Jace is a complete novel with HEA, the second 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 sexy spy girls. Only readers over 18 should dive into the deliciously hot world of the River brothers.

REVIEW ***** (5* rating)

Jace is another fast-paced action, shifter paranormal story with plenty of HOT romance from super author, Alisa Woods. Shifters are still being kidnapped, including alpha military personnel, and all hell breaks loose when Noah Wilding goes missing. Piper, Noah’s sister, needs to find him as soon as possible, knowing that something is amiss. And yet, with only the River pack to turn to she may not be taken so seriously at first!

The story opens up dramatically when, during a break from sleeping after having a nightmare about his uncontrollable ferocious wolf beast, Jace finds himself in a heated tackle with an intruder. Things become even more interesting when the intruder shifts into a wolf, and later shifts back again – into a female. A naked female. Under Jace’s hot, hard body! What an intro to the story!

Piper Wilding has come initially to look for her brother, Daniel, to ask him about the whereabouts of their brother, Noah. Once she is heard by Daniel and the River pack, Daniel feels that maybe she is overreacting and that Noah is most probably on a secret military mission. But, Jace and his brothers are only too aware of shifters being kidnapped. And they know that the government is involved.

In an attempt to kill two birds with one stone, the Rivers decide to check it out, and to follow up on an Agent Smith, who we know had been part of the kidnapping and torture of shifters in book 1, Jaxson. This would of course mean that for newly-mated Jaxson and his half-witch lover, Julia, would have to put their ‘honeymoon’ plans off a little while longer!

Jace has been reluctant to be too involved with any action for a while due to the fear of his inner wolf being uncontrollable and causing harm to civilians or those he cares about. His wolf is twice the size of an average shifter, and he has been laden with guilt ever since a village of civilians in Afghanistan had all been killed by a ferocious animal – his wolf – when he had been deployed there. Since then Jace has decided to keep his wolf restrained, and promised never to take a mate for the sheer horror of what could happen.

Piper, also vowing never to take a mate, witnessed her own mother feel trapped when she mated for the second time to an emotionally abusive man who led her to suicidal tendencies. Piper never wants to feel so vulnerable and controlled by one person who claim they love her.

However, during the course of the story, Jace’s inner wolf keeps trying to come to the fore, especially when Piper is around. This crazy, female shifter is driving him insane. And, although initially it is the sexual attraction pulling at his wolf – scrambling around naked on his kitchen floor underneath him – it is also the power of his wolf’s need to protect her. Piper believes in his kindness and willingness to protect her, as well as feeling a heavy weight of lust and attraction towards him.

Because of Jace’s need to protect her, he isn’t all too happy about Piper going on this mission with them. But, after all it is her brother they are searching for, and her counterintelligence skills and knowledge of some government figures can certainly come in useful. Will they find Noah? And, what of Agent Smith – is he still up to his old tricks?

In this explosive, action paranormal you will be gripped from start to finish. It is a read certainly for the more mature reader, especially with the HOT scenes between Jace and Piper. Will Jace release his beast? Or will they both control themselves to keep their relationship casual? All will be revealed. And, the reader will be left wanting more, which we’ll be getting very soon with the release of Jared (book 3)!

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

Jace (River Pack Wolves #2) by Alisa Woods is available at Amazon US and Amazon UK.

You can also check out our review of book 1 in the River Pack trilogy – JAXSON

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

You can also check out our reviews of Alisa Woods’s True Alpha and Dark Alpha series:-

Desired (True Alpha #1) – short story

Guarded (True Alpha #2) – short story

Hunted (True Alpha #3) – short story

Captured (True Alpha #4) – short story

Sacrificed (True Alpha #5) – short story

Claimed (True Alpha #6) – short story

A True Alpha Christmas – novella – stand alone short story

Torment (Dark Alpha #1) – short story

Pleasure (Dark Alpha #2) – short story

Deception (Dark Alpha #3) – short story

Escape (Dark Alpha #4) – short story

Penance (Dark Alpha #5) – short story

Loved (Dark Alpha #6) – short story

**REVIEW** JAXSON (River Pack Wolves #1) by Alisa Woods

You may remember our reviews of Alisa Woods True Alpha and Dark Alpha short story series from earlier in the year. Now she has returned with a full length novel New Adult paranormal romance shifter series, River Wolves Pack, with the first being released this week, Jaxson.

Jaxson (River Pack Wolves 1) - New Adult Paranormal RomanceTitle: Jaxson (River Pack Wolves #1)

Author: Alisa Woods

Genre: New Adult Paranormal Romance

Date released: September 5th, 2015

Published by: Sworn Secrets Publishing

Length: 167 pages

Blurb: Three brothers. Three Secrets. One hope to save the shifters of Seattle.
Former SEAL Jaxson River would give his life for his brothers and his pack, but if he doesn’t claim a mate soon, he’ll be forced to step down as their alpha. There’s only one problem: Jaxson’s dark secret would kill any mate he claimed. With someone kidnapping shifters off the street—and only Jaxson and his brothers, Jace and Jared, to stop them—now is not the time for his secret to come out.

Curvy Olivia Lilyfield is a half-witch orphan with a dark secret of her own. She wants to atone for it by doing good in the world, so when she finds a wolf being tortured in an alley, she doesn’t hesitate to help… even though wolves and witches mix like matches and TNT.

Olivia’s dangerous magic means she can’t let anyone get too close—but Jaxson can’t keep his hands off her, and his kisses are more than she can resist. As they race to save the disappearing shifters of Seattle, the true danger lies in loving each other. They’re playing with magical fire… and their secrets could end up destroying them both.

Jaxson is a complete novel with HEA, the first in the River Pack Wolves trilogy (Jace and Jared coming soon).

Contains scorching shifter sex, alpha military heroes, and sexy witches. Only readers over 18 should dive into the deliciously hot world of the River brothers.

REVIEW ***** (5* RATING)

I couldn’t wait to get my paws on Alisha Woods‘s latest NA paranormal romance release, Jaxson. After reading the authors other works in this genre, True Alpha and Dark Alpha short story series, and loving every minute of them, I knew I would jump straight into the River Pack Wolves with excitement.

Jaxson is a full length novel told from both Jaxson and Olivia’s point of view. I probably love novels written in this manner best of all as this allows the reader to empathise with more than one character, which can explain their behaviour and actions. The story really flows at a good pace and has a great mix of romance, magic and action.

Jaxson is leading the River pack, trying to find out just who is kidnapping shifters off the street. Many shifters do not return, while some others have come back, but they are not the same as they were when they went in. It’s as if some of their inner magic has been taken. It is up to Jaxson and his brothers, Jared and Jace to ensure the safety of shifters before there aren’t many left to take. For this, the River pack need a good, strong leader. To become stronger still, it would be advantageous for Jaxson to be mated. The magic bond that is created between a shifter and his female mate is like no other. And, it would fare well if they had little ones as they too would be strong and healthy, being born into mated, bonded parents.

However, Jaxson has a secret, but now is not the time to tell his pack. They need him. At least to see out the attack on shifters. But, the truth is that he can’t mate. He was cursed by a witch, meaning anytime he went to take a mate, one bite would kill them!

Olivia Lilyfield is not having a great time. After walking out of her job, not wanting to adhere to her boss, and wanting to get into the thick of things with her reporting, she is left jobless and in debt. After meeting Jaxson in a sticky situation, she finds herself drawn to him. It isn’t too long before he realises her situation, and, being equally attracted to her in both his human side and inner wolf, he reaches out and offers her a steady job with good pay. How could she say no? Here is this HOT shifter offering her what she needs.

It is quite clear to the reader just how intensely attracted they are to each other. And the physical closeness that Jaxson has to Olivia at times really do turn the heat up. The passion is practically burning, it is so hot. However, after becoming so close to Jaxson, and unaware of his secret curse, Olivia realises that she couldn’t possibly be his mate – he needs to mate with a female shifter, to be an even stronger alpha and lead his pack.

They become so close that Jaxson confides in her. He also airs his concern of the missing shifters and that he needs to remain alpha at least while they deal with this problem. Working together, Olivia has a plan which will help Jaxson keep his secret a little longer, keeping his family from pressurising him, help build stronger allies with other local shifter packs and allow him the time to deal with the current disturbances, which Jaxson strongly feels are set up by the government and allowing the experimenting on the shifters.

These characters are certainly in love, and very passionate. But, to Olivia, it still couldn’t work out between them, especially now. For she also has something that she hasn’t told him; she is half-witch. On finding this out, surely he would go crazy, for it was a witch who had cursed him. Even if her were to listen, wolves and witches do not mix well together. She doesn’t practice magic, but would he believe her? And, after having an ‘accident’ with her magic years ago, could she even trust herself to be with him? Surely she was dangerous?

Readers will be treated to a story where love, romance, heat, action and magic all come together in Jaxson. You’ll be gripped from the beginning, rooting for a HEA, and constantly questioning how each of them are going to overcome their problems, their fears, and their love.

A copy of Jaxson was provided by the author in return for a fair and honest review.

Jaxson (River Pack Wolves #1) by Alisa Woods is now available at Amazon US and Amazon UK.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

You can also check out our reviews of Alisa Woods’s True Alpha and Dark Alpha series:-

Desired (True Alpha #1) – short story

Guarded (True Alpha #2) – short story

Hunted (True Alpha #3) – short story

Captured (True Alpha #4) – short story

Sacrificed (True Alpha #5) – short story

Claimed (True Alpha #6) – short story

A True Alpha Christmas – novella – stand alone short story

Torment (Dark Alpha #1) – short story

Pleasure (Dark Alpha #2) – short story

Deception (Dark Alpha #3) – short story

Escape (Dark Alpha #4) – short story

Penance (Dark Alpha #5) – short story

Loved (Dark Alpha #6) – short story

**REVIEW** Loved (Dark Alpha #6) (short story) by Alisa Woods

Today is the release of the final instalment of the new adult, paranormal romance Dark Alpha series, LOVED. Written by the brilliant Alisa Woods (True Alpha short story series), this is a super climatic ending of such a gripping and lovable series. If you are a fan of shifter paranormals, or even romance in general, this is such a lovely series of one proving their love for someone, helping them to escape their unwanted mate, and ultimately showing a sacrifice of their own life to protect the one that they love…

Loved (Dark Alpha 6)Title: Loved (Dark Alpha #6)

Author: Alisa Woods

Genre: New adult, paranormal romance

Released date: March 30th, 2015

Released by: Sworn Secrets Publishing

Length: 60 pages

Blurb: Shifters live in the shadows of Seattle, just under the skin of the alpha male, dot-com entrepreneurs who are building a new Silicon Valley in the Emerald City.

The final installment of Dark Alpha…

Is love stronger than magic? Or will breaking an unbreakable bond destroy them both?

Loved (Dark Alpha 6) is 60 pages or 15,000 words. It’s the final of six episodes in the Dark Alpha serial. Dark Alpha is the sequel series to True Alpha, the debut shifters-in-Seattle paranormal romance from Alisa Woods. 

REVIEW

Everything comes together in this last instalment of Dark Alpha, but not necessarily how we would all expect… LOVED picks up from where we left off in Penance (book 5), where after rescuing his love Arianna from the grasps of her unwanted alpha, Mace, Jak is now sacrificing himself for Arianna’s complete riddance of Mace from her blood, and for the safety of her and her family’s future. With the help of a witch, Circe, the spell should draw out Mace’s wolf from Arianna’s blood, and join Jak’s – where the two will fight it out until Jak’s body can no longer bare it. Only Arianna doesn’t know Jak’s plan.

Many questions are to be asked during the first few pages; will Circe’s spell work and free Arianna from Mace totally, or will Mace’s magic bond be forever mixed with her own blood forever? Plus, will this experience really kill Jak, or is there a shred of hope?

As Arianna witnesses and realises Jak’s sacrifice she cannot believe it. She can’t bear it – she can’t live now without Jak. But, is it too late to save him? And, even if she could, how could she save him? Arianna is completely overwhelmed with Jak’s love and devotion to her, and even towards her family who he doesn’t know. But, without Jak her escape from Mace is meaningless. He rescued her from Mace to begin with- she needs him to carry on, to give her the love and life she wants to be a part of.

And then, we come back to the question, ‘Is love stronger than magic? Or will breaking an unbreakable bond destroy them both?

Not only do we have to worry about Jak’s welfare here, there is also the threat of Mace finding them, and what he’ll do to them when he does. It was only a matter of time before Mace caught up with them. The circumstances were a little surprising and unexpected, but make for a more fearsome scene that is certainly unpredictable, but thoroughly enjoyable.

Throughout this series, I absolutely loved reading a little about Gage, Mace’s brother and Jak’s alpha. He is aware of Mace’s vicious and dark side, but Mace is his brother. At the same time, he saved Jak from a bad life himself, and brought him up like a son. This would be a fascinating character to explore more, and I would love it if Gage showed up in any future work of Alisa’s.

I can’t wait to see what Alisa Woods has in store for her fans next. Her writing is exciting, emotional, suspenseful and dark. You can catch up with both True Alpha and Dark Alpha now available in individual boxed sets, or as individual short stories. These 5* series are not to be missed!

A copy of Loved was provided by the author in return for a fair and honest review.

Loved (Dark Alpha #6) is available at Amazon US and Amazon UK.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

To find out more info of the previous instalments of Dark Alpha, as well as Alisa Woods‘ first series, True Alpha, along with reviews, please check them all out below:-

Desired (True Alpha #1) – short story

Guarded (True Alpha #2) – short story

Hunted (True Alpha #3) – short story

Captured (True Alpha #4) – short story

Sacrificed (True Alpha #5) – short story

Claimed (True Alpha #6) – short story

A True Alpha Christmas – novella – stand alone short story

Torment (Dark Alpha #1) – short story

Pleasure (Dark Alpha #2) – short story

Deception (Dark Alpha #3) – short story

Escape (Dark Alpha #4) – short story

Penance (Dark Alpha #5) – short story

**REVIEW** Penance (Dark Alpha #5) short story by Alisa Woods

Today is the release of the penultimate of this new adult, paranormal romance, short story series, Dark Alpha, with PENANCE. If you haven’t already, alpha lovers, you’ve got to check out this hot, passionate series with plenty of action and conflict. It is definitely a must-read, 5* series, as was the previous series, True Alpha!

Penance (Dark Alpha 5)Title: Penance (Dark Alpha #5)

Author: Alisa Woods

Genre: New Adult, paranormal romance

Release date: March 16th, 2015

Released by: Sworn Secrets Publishing

Length: 60 pages

Blurb: Shifters live in the shadows of Seattle, just under the skin of the alpha male, dot-com billionaires who are building a new Silicon Valley in the Emerald City.

Jak’s plan is a dangerous one… but will he even get the chance to carry it out?

Is love stronger than magic? Or will breaking an unbreakable bond destroy them both? 

Contains strong sexual themes/language and is meant for readers over 18.

Review

After the initial escape from Mace (Arianna’s unwanted mate and alpha) in the last instalment, entitled Escape, it is Jak’s every intention to ensure the safety of Arianna and her family from Mace’s wrath. Even if it means he has to give up his own life to do so. The heat is on, but Jak has a plan, or does he?

Without Arianna’s knowledge, Jak is to give himself to a witch in return for her to cast a spell to rid Arianna of Mace’s magic bond to her. This should enable Arianna to live her own life, have her own pups, without Mace ever being able to have a hold on her or any child/shifter she bears.

The opening scenes are with Jak and Circe, the witch who is to carry out the spell. But first, she wants her taste of Jak’s HOT wolf.  This scene is intense, dark and will certainly make the reader feel just as sickened as Jak is. We know he is desperately in love with Arianna, and that’s what the reader has to keep reminding themselves. That is why he is doing this. He needs the assurance that Arianna and her family will be kept safe. She needs to be unmated from Mace. But, will the deal with Circe go according to plan? Will the witch carry out her spell, or is she just using him to have her wicked way with him?

Meanwhile, Arianna is wondering where on earth he is, and what errand is taking him so long. She is sure he is in trouble. What if he can’t reach her, can’t get back to her? She knows the lengths that Mace will go to in order to get her back and seek revenge:-

“… Mace isn’t just any mate – he’s a bastard dark alpha. He’ll tear through anything and anyone who stands between him and what he wants, and he really doesn’t care who he has to kill to do it.”

During the course of Penance, Arianna learns of her family’s help in trying to rescue her, and she wonders why everyone is helping her. There’s Jak, her brothers, Sarra…. After all she has betrayed her bonded mate and alpha, and yet they accept her, and what is happening, even though their lives are at risk. But, she’s come this far – she can’t go back, and she couldn’t have stayed!

With another 5* instalment, Alisa Woods‘ writing is simply amazing. With surprising turns in the story, strong characters and great fluidity this is a fantastic read. As with every episode thus far, there is so much packed into these short stories, not just with the storyline and action, but with the character building and their emotions – it really is hard to put down. And, you’ll be begging for more!

To find out what happens you’re going to have to check out Penance for yourself! But one thing is certain – it isn’t the end until the final instalment, released on March 30th, 2015, which is also when the complete box set of Dark Alpha will be released for you to enjoy back-to-back episodes! I can’t wait for Book 6, and for Alisa Woods‘ future releases!

A copy of Penance was provided by the author in return for a fair and honest review.

Penance (Dark Alpha #5) is available at Amazon US and Amazon UK.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

To find out more info of the previous instalments of Dark Alpha, as well as Alisa Woods‘ first series, True Alpha, along with reviews, please check them all out below:-

Desired (True Alpha #1) – short story

Guarded (True Alpha #2) – short story

Hunted (True Alpha #3) – short story

Captured (True Alpha #4) – short story

Sacrificed (True Alpha #5) – short story

Claimed (True Alpha #6) – short story

A True Alpha Christmas – novella – stand alone short story

Torment (Dark Alpha #1) – short story

Pleasure (Dark Alpha #2) – short story

Deception (Dark Alpha #3) – short story

Escape (Dark Alpha #4) – short story