Review Round Up: January ’16

Hello readers, this month we have fourteen great titles for you to check out; some from our more regular authors, such as Beverly Ovalle, Christina Phillips, Nina Mason and Katherine McIntyre, as well as fresh authors to us, in Lolita London, and Krissy V who we had the pleasure to meet at last years Second City Signing event!

Still in the mood for love after your Valentines Day? ❤ With plenty of erotic, contemporary and historical romance reads, there is also a nice blend of sci-fi, fantasy and paranormal romance in our review recap this month. Plus, time to catch up on the last of our festive/wintry reads of the season which would be suitable to read as the cold weather lingers just for the next few weeks, or could urge you to purchase those festive reads well in advance for next Christmas! Author, Deborah Melanie features with a double festive review with her short stories Winter’s Spirit and The Good Girl; whether you’re into sweet romance, or hot, erotic you’ll have the choice of sweet or spicy 😉

Whatever your mood, we hope you find something to whet your appetite!

Happy reading,

Caroline & Tina 🙂 x

 

Stealing HopeStealing Hope: A Dragon’s Fated Heart by Beverly Ovalle, sci-fi fantasy, post apocalyptic paranormal erotica (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Amazon Bestseller in Erotica Paranormal AND Erotica Science Fiction

The apocalypse has come and gone.
Those who survived learned to adapt.
Dragons awaken to once again reign over the skies.

Upon eruption of a volcano, Ari awakens to a changed world, and a knowing that his dragon’s mate is near. He saves her twice—once as a dragon, and again as a man—and wins her confidence.

Hope cried out, moaning, “just change me with pleasure?”

Hope is restless and unfulfilled until she meets Ari, the man of her fantasies. The sensual tension between them heightens with every touch. When their passion explodes, Hope gets pulled into the dragon’s mating ritual…and into a world of erotic sensation she never dreamed existed but now cannot live without. The dragon binds his mate to him with a ritual that shows Hope her true nature in this humorous erotic romance.

East to WestEast to West by Lolita London, erotic historical western romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: A letter in the mail, a hurried kiss goodbye, and a long train ride to her new life marks the end of Mary’s childhood.

When Mary Gray is informed she’s been selected to be a mail order bride, she’s reluctant to say the least – and not just because she has to leave her old life behind to marry a man she’s never met.

What she finds – or rather, what she doesn’t find – when she gets off the train surprises her. Her husband is nowhere to be found, and she’s informed that she’ll be living by herself until her fiance is finished overseeing a harvest.

To pass the time, she gets a job as a local schoolteacher… but a dangerous flirtation with her eldest student, Tom, threatens to end her marriage before it begins.

What she doesn’t know is Tom isn’t the man he seems to be… and she’ll find out just how little she knows about the man she’s marrying when they finally meet face to face.

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

StormyKnightDark and Stormy Knight (The Knights of Avalon #2) by Nina Mason, paranormal urban erotic romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: She’ll risk everything for their love—even her life.

Aspiring screenwriter Gwyn Morland is ready for her big break. That means securing the film rights to elusive author Lady Ruthven’s acclaimed novel—which means traveling to Scotland. It’s a trip timid Gwyn isn’t prepared for, and her fears seem justified when her tour bus careens over a cliff outside of Castle Glenarvon. But the plot thickens when Gwyn is rescued from the brink of death by a handsome and mysterious stranger…

Leith MacQuill is not only the writer behind Lady Ruthven’s novel, but a shape-shifting faery knight bearing a tragic curse: the woman he gives his heart to will die. Saving Gwyn proves to be a dangerous choice when he finds himself falling for her the longer she stays in the castle. Not even his usual BDSM role-playing games are enough to thwart the intense desire they feel for each other. But to stay together, Gwyn and Leith must embark on a dangerous mission into Avalon, the realm of the faeries. Will their love be strong enough to conquer the curse? Or will Gwyn’s new life be stolen from her before it’s even begun?

MCTo Win Her Trust (Players #2) by Mackenzie Crowne, contemporary romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Can she trust this player with her heart?

Ever since experiencing a childhood trauma, reclusive artist CC Calhoun has suffered from panic attacks. But when a fateful kiss from handsome wide receiver, Kevin “Tuck” Tucker, is enough to stop one of those episodes cold, she wonders if guarding her heart has been the right choice. Will going on a test date with Tuck open her to trusting someone for the first time in years? Or will she wind up being just another notch in the football player’s bedpost?

Tuck has a reputation for charming women into bed, but after his kiss with CC, he’s left aching for more. When he proposes a second date, his attraction to the sexy blonde looks like the makings of true love—something he’s never quite believed in—until now. But when Tuck discovers CC’s childhood secrets, will the pro athlete be tough enough to stay by her side—or will he betray her hard-earned trust?

HFSHunting for Spring by Katherine McIntyre, paranormal urban fantasy romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Hunters are a lonely breed, and Conor’s no exception, until the day he meets Brenna. Even though she slinks in unannounced and kills the wight he was hunting down, the girl’s a mystery and he can’t get that blinding smile or those gorgeous curves off his mind. Since they’re both after the same caster who’s unleashing these monsters, he suggests teaming up, and despite her initial reluctance, the hungry way she scans him down promises something powerful.

However, her secrets have repercussions, and faster than Conor can lift his Glock, he’s drawn into the web of kidnappings and Unseelie mischief, all concealing the machinations of a darker foe—one that plans to bring Philly to ruin.

SatedSated by Lucy Felthouse, paranormal erotic romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: A human, a vampire and a werewolf walked into a bar. Sexy is what happens next.

Since getting together with her vampire boyfriend, Ace, Aneesa is enjoying a sex life she could never have with a human. Ace has skill, strength, stamina…and is massively adventurous. Aneesa is checking things off her sexual bucket list at a rate of knots. However, she hasn’t even come close to experiencing the ultimate item on her list. So when Ace beats her to it, proposing a threesome with his werewolf friend, Barton, Aneesa’s definitely up for it.

Barton is attractive, smart and sexy—almost too good to be true, in fact. Aneesa decides not to jump straight into things, but makes sure it’s what she truly wants. However, it turns out Barton’s not so easily dissuaded.

Will Aneesa get the ultimate erotic experience she’s desired for so long? Will she be truly sated, or is the plan doomed to failure?

CupcakeEbookCover04-Final-200x300A Cupcake Christmas (Touchstone #5) (short story) by Beth Barany, festive holiday romance adventure(reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: What if you risked losing your baking legacy by cooking up a love truly special? Florian MacMillian needs a final job to complete his baking resume—preferably a job where he’s unlikely to blow things up with his unruly magic—before returning to the North Pole and taking his rightful place as Master Baker to all the elves. Kate Delore desperately needs help in her fast-growing cupcake business. Florian is a perfect fit, so she brings him on as baker. For a short time, Florian is happily up to his elbows in batter, and Kate’s business is booming. But when things heat up between them, Florian wonders if he should risk his legacy to cook up something truly special.

properlyornotatall_800Properly or Not At All (short story) by Lucy Felthouse, erotic romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: How will a husband and wife cope when they’re told one of their favourite kinky pastimes is temporarily off the menu?

Tristan and Jayme are not only devoted husband and wife, they are also Dominant and submissive, with a particular penchant for spanking. They’ve been playing delicious kinky games for the fifteen years they’ve been together and couldn’t be happier. However, when Tristan develops a health issue that means he can’t redden his wife’s backside for a while, it puts both of them under a lot of strain. It’s a big part of their sex life and one they’ll miss badly.

They try to find a way around their unfortunate predicament, but it’s not easy. In the end, Tristan declares that he will either spank Jayme’s bottom properly, or not at all.

The prospect of no spanking at all dismays Jayme, but she has no other choice. Or does she? Continuing to put her mind toward the issue, she indulges in some solo experimentation, with mixed results.

But how will Tristan feel when he finds out his wife has gone behind his back?

Reader Advisory: This book contains anal sex and a scene of female ejaculation. 

Publisher’s Note: This book was previously released as part of the Over the Knee anthology by Totally Bound Publishing. 

MonsterDefaced: A Dark Romance Novel (The Monster Trilogy #1) by Marissa Farrar, dark romance suspense (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Monster
Hidden away from society by his criminal father, there lives a man who has never entered the outside world. Now, having taken over his father’s business, he has all the money and power he could dream of, yet still he refuses to let himself be viewed by the rest of society.

Lily
Traumatised by an event in her past, Lily Drayton has a phobia of being touched. Though she helps people externally with her skills as a laser therapist, she refuses to let anyone in, emotionally or physically. When Lily is kidnapped on the way home from work one evening, she discovers she’s not the only person who keeps themselves cut off from the rest of the world.

Defaced
A man owns her now—a man both dangerous and enigmatic. Drawn by his dual beauty and hidden pain, he awakens something inside her, something she believed was long dead. Brought to a room without windows, she’s given an impossible task: to make her owner acceptable to the outside world.

Can altering his face change who he is as a man, or is he truly a monster, both inside and out?

A Taste of ChristmasA Taste of Christmas [Dublin Style] by Krissy V, festive holiday contemporary romance, chick-lit (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: My name is Nollaig, it’s the Irish word for Christmas. I hate my name. My parents loved Christmas and that’s why they gave me such a festive name, together with the fact that I was born on Christmas Day.

However, my parents are no longer with us after dying in a car accident on Christmas Eve, five years ago.

Now I hate Christmas all together.

I always hated the fact that everyone got presents on my birthday. Now my parents are gone and ever since then I just don’t feel like celebrating Christmas. Everything about this holiday gives me sad memories.

I need a miracle to happen over the Christmas holiday to make me change my mind about Christmas.

Who knew that a quick shopping trip would provide me with the miracle that I so desperately needed?

Winter's SpiritWinter’s Spirit (short story) by Deborah Melanie, contemporary festive holiday romance, paranormal, fantasy, chick-lit (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: Winter McAndrew is on the brink of divorcing her philandering husband, Philip, when he dies in a car crash. One year later and with unfinished business; Philip is still earth bound and interfering in his wife’s love life. Trying to make amends isn’t always easy when you’re dead. Not only has Winter fallen for her old crush, Jack Tobin, but he also happens to be Philip’s cousin. With more complications than a woman needs at Christmas, Winter tries to find peace at her holiday home in The Lake District. However, when she finds herself snowed in with Jack; ghosts, old and new cause quite a stir. Will Winter get her man, or will ghostly Philip put an end to all her festive fantasies?

The Good GirlThe Good Girl (short story) by Deborah Melanie, contemporary festive holiday erotic fantasy (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: With the festive season almost upon her, plus size model, Sarah, wonders if being naughty not nice, will get her everything her heart and body desires. With two gorgeous neighbours and a unique employment opportunity, could this be the year when Sarah’s naughty Christmas wishes are finally granted?

The book contains adult themes and menage situations.

Taken by the BillionaireTaken by the Billionaire (A Collection of Stepbrother romance novellas) by Christina Phillips, Mel Teshco and Cathleen Ross, contemporary erotic romance (reviewed by Tina)

Novella Blurbs:

He’s forbidden…and he’s her every wicked fantasy

Ravished by the Billionaire by Christina Phillips

Dexter Jericho has it all – wealth, good looks and women falling at his feet. The last thing he wants is his little stepsister working in his London casino – until he meets her again. Because now Gabriella is all grown up and sexy as hell, and he can’t keep his hands off her. There’s only one problem – she might be a corporate spy, in which case he’ll keep her close and seduce her secrets from her.

Gabi’s had a crush on her stepbrother for as long as she can remember, and he’s finally noticed her. His scorching kisses and talented tongue make her forget this is a forbidden romance. Until she discovers the truth for his sudden interest and realizes his dirty little secret – is her.

Punished by the Billionaire by Mel Teshco

Isabella wants no part of the Jericho fortune, not if it means being a puppet to her stepfather, Harrison Jericho. Instead she turns to her one skill and passion and becomes a professional gambler. Except no money in the world is enough to make her forget her eldest stepbrother, Max Jericho, or the scorching kiss they shared at a party.

Max has been keeping tabs on his beautiful stepsister, Isabella. He’s been half in love with her for years, and no amount of hard labor and bedding other women makes him forget her. But his feelings won’t mean a thing if she’s guilty of dragging the Jericho name through the mud. He needs to get her alone to uncover the truth. And now that he’s CEO of his very own casino, Bella is drawn to him like a moth to flame.

Except losing a bet to Max and staying in his penthouse for a week just might be Isabella’s biggest gamble yet. Especially when she discovers how far he’s willing to go to clear the Jericho name.

Trapped by the Billionaire by Cathleen Ross

Tom Jericho has never got over the naked body slide his sixteen year old stepsister Christabelle Evernight performed on him when he was twenty-one. Born with a sense of honor, he wouldn’t take her virginity then but he’s certainly interested in having her now. After all, what’s a little dirty fun between step siblings and Christabelle has been a very bad girl.

There’s nothing more humiliating than being knocked back by the hottest, sexiest stepbrother Chrissy has ever seen, so she’s not going to Australia to work under him, except her stepfather leaves her no choice.

Tom Jericho knows her secret and he’s going to make her pay, but Chrissy has grown up now and she happens to enjoy Tom’s brand of punishment – and knows just how to pay him back.

**DOUBLE REVIEW** Winter’s Spirit & The Good Girl (short stories) by Deborah Melanie

Today we offer you a choice of SWEET or SPICY……, or maybe you like to be greedy and have both as I did! 🙂 Both stories, Winter’s Spirit and The Good Girl are festive/winter short stories by Deborah Melanie, and offer more excuses to curl up on the sofa and divulge in some seasonal hotties!

SWEET

Winter's SpiritTitle: Winter’s Spirit

Author: Deborah Melanie

Genre: Contemporary holiday romance, fantasy, paranormal, short story, chick-lit

Date released: February 2nd, 2011

Published by: Solstice Publishing

Length: 81 pages

Blurb: Winter McAndrew is on the brink of divorcing her philandering husband, Philip, when he dies in a car crash. One year later and with unfinished business; Philip is still earth bound and interfering in his wife’s love life. Trying to make amends isn’t always easy when you’re dead. Not only has Winter fallen for her old crush, Jack Tobin, but he also happens to be Philip’s cousin. With more complications than a woman needs at Christmas, Winter tries to find peace at her holiday home in The Lake District. However, when she finds herself snowed in with Jack; ghosts, old and new cause quite a stir. Will Winter get her man, or will ghostly Philip put an end to all her festive fantasies?

REVIEW ***** (5* RATING)

I absolutely loved this fun and sweet, short story. It has a little of everything that a festive romance should: two really developed main characters, a great, wintry setting, romance chase, warmth, fun, and of course a dilemma for Winter and Jack to overcome.

Winter, although hurt from her cheating husband, is a very considerate, loving person as she decides to protect his family from knowledge of Philip’s philandering ways. Deep down she has always been in love with Philip’s cousin, Jack, but as fate would have it, it wasn’t meant to be.

Now, Winter has been alone for so long; both during and after Philip’s death. And, after some awkward conversations with Jack, that leave her all confused, she decides to take a break in her holiday home in the Lake District.

On the flip side, Jack has always been in love with Winter, and her happiness is all that he has ever wanted for her. And so, believing that Philip was the one for her, he remained silent all these years about his true feelings. A close friend is aware of his unhappiness and now encourages Jack to come clean to Winter. And, when he finally plucks up the courage to approach and tell her his true feelings he gets wind of her mystery man! Thus, deciding to leave her be.

It is confusing and a little frustrating at times for these two as they keep shying around each other, and not really knowing the truth. However, their real feelings for each other leave the reader longing for them to get together. And, the author keeps it fun and sexy as her choice of words flirt with the reader and keep you hooked.

“The secret crush she harboured for her friend, felt to some extent out of control. Despite the melting snow on his coat and the layers of woollens surrounding him, the man oozed sex appeal. His supple fingers caressed the colourful trinkets and beads on the nearby display stand. Without warning she found herself wondering how those fingers would feel on the nape of her neck, or gliding in a gentle caress across her cheek, or … She shook herself from the visual. She needed to move him from the beads and fast before she leapt on top of the man.”

And, this story couldn’t get any better when both characters have no choice but to remain in each other’s company in unforeseen circumstances. Will this be the opportunity they both need to reveal their true feelings? Or, does the situation encourage an overwhelming awkwardness that leaves them further apart than they started?

Winter’s Spirit by Deborah Melanie is available at Amazon UK and Amazon US.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

 

SPICY

The Good GirlTitle: The Good Girl

Author: Deborah Melanie

Genre: Contemporary holiday erotica, erotic fantasy, short story

Date released: December 1st, 2014

Published by: Solstice Publishing

Length: 33 pages

Blurb: With the festive season almost upon her, plus size model, Sarah, wonders if being naughty not nice, will get her everything her heart and body desires. With two gorgeous neighbours and a unique employment opportunity, could this be the year when Sarah’s naughty Christmas wishes are finally granted?

The book contains adult themes and menage situations.

REVIEW ***** (5* RATING)

Now, it’s time for the heat levels to rise with this hot, spicy, festive short story. The Good Girl is a fun and naughty read that will certainly get your pulse rate up!

It’s coming up to Christmas, and with no job, plus-size model, Sarah, needs cash. Her friends and neighbours, partners Jack and Neil, might just have the answer she is looking for. For a delightful amount of money she could work at the store in which they are employed, modelling sexy and outlandish garments for customers.

Sarah’s desires cloud her mind for the most part, as she finds her male neighbours really hot. In fact, aside from wanting a job, they are second on her Christmas list to Santa. After all, she has been a ‘good girl’.

“My second wish is purely for indulgence purposes. And I do think that even though I’m over 18, I should still be indulged by someone, especially at this time of year. Actually I’d love to be indulged by two someones, my neighbours, actually…. Do you know those two handsome boys that someone planted next door, for the sole purpose  of sexually tormenting me?…

I don’t consider myself a demanding type of woman Santa, but I could be. Especially where those two are concerned. I won’t bore you with the details of the fantasies they star in; it probably would be too x-rated for you anyway. But they are HOT. I’m in no doubt whatsoever that in real life they would be equally as hot…”

As she is offered a further role, working directly with them, modelling and more, it isn’t too long before Sarah’s wildest thoughts become a reality in the most surprising way!

If you’re looking for a sweet romance then this is not the book for you. But, if you’re looking for something naughty, dirty, wild and fun this book is perfect! Plus, it is an extremely short read that you could slot in at any time! It is recommended for adults only (18ys +) due to it’s content.

The Good Girl by Deborah Melanie is available at Amazon UK and Amazon US.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker

 

 

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!

**Halloween Humour Review** Vivian’s Vampire (short story) by Deborah Melanie

Halloween is upon us, and what’s better to get us into the Halloween spirit than a short, fun, Halloween costume party read? Deborah Melanie had me laughing out loud with this cute number, that has everything from the ghoulish atmosphere, quirky capers, and a sweet attraction!

Vivian's VampireTitle: Vivian’s Vampire

Author: Deborah Melanie

Genre: Contemporary paranormal/comedy/romance

Release date: October 23rd, 2013

Released by: Solstice Publishing

Length: 29 pages

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. 

REVIEW ***** (5* rating)

Vivian’s Vampire is an absolutely hilarious and fun read – just perfect for Halloween. If you’re not looking for a terrifyingly gory and horrific read, you’ll love this little gem, which has a slight horror feel but with quirkiness, capers and a tad of romance. Not to mention a paranormal element!

Vivian is on her way to a Halloween party dressed in a hooded cape as the Grim Reaper, which makes her feel more like Harry Potter when she has her glasses on and holding her wand (scythe)! A perfect accessory for Death is Bob – a rubber, severed head that adds to the effect.

After having to make a diversion on the road, round black, winding country lanes that she doesn’t recognise, the atmosphere begins to get a little eerie. Vivian’s visibility is lessened by her annoying contacts. Surely it can’t be thick fog out there? And, when she notices a village, signed ‘Welcome to Hell’, and that Bob’s head has gone from the passenger seat, she begins to freak a little. Added to this there is a blinding light and a crash into the nearest tree!

Getting out of the car she sees a sexy vampire bleeding down on her from above the branches and she just can’t bear it anymore. Running away with her phone signal out, and the sound of werewolves, Vivian finds herself in more and more trouble.

The author has really captured the sense of fun with the Halloween costume party and the quirkiness of Vivian, the sense of horror with the eerie atmosphere and strange goings on and wrapped them with the chance of a cute little romance in there too. I cannot wait to read more from this author!

Vivian’s Vampire was provided by the author in return for a fair and honest opinion.

You can find Deborah Melanie‘s Vivian’s Vampire at Amazon UK and Amazon US.

Reviewed by Caroline Barker