Review Round-Up – February ’15

Hi readers, we hope that you are all well and looking forward to the arrival of Spring, as Tina and I are. We want to say goodbye to the cold and gloominess, the bugs and viruses, and welcome some clear, blue, sunny skies to wake up to and motivate us to get out and about. I’m sure if it wasn’t for certain responsibilities I would just hibernate with my books and laptop throughout the winter months!

With Valentine’s Day just a few days away I hope that you are all in the mood for love! We have been reading many great romance novels, whether they are contemporary, historical, paranormal, comedy or erotic, and so there are more than enough reads to bury your head into to prepare you for the weekend of love!!

Amongst our latest, thirteen reviews we have two thrillers and a non/fiction travel and food book – if you are planning to go away, or want to try something new to eat, this is a fab read of first-hand accounts with recipes at the end of each chapter!

We hope you enjoy our selection. And whatever your plans, have a lovely Valentine’s weekend! (As always, please click on the titles for our full review!)

Caroline & Tina ❤

Torment (Dark Alpha 1)Torment (Dark Alpha #1) and Pleasure (Dark Alpha #2) by Alisa Woods, paranormal romance (reviewed by Caroline)

Torment (Dark Alpha #1) – short story

New Adult Paranormal Romance serial

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.

Jak enjoys the female human population of Seattle as much as any wolf, but his heart belongs to a female shifter who’s already mated. Worse, she’s the mate of his alpha’s brother.

Arianna was captured from her pack when she was only twenty and mated to a wolf whose dark side takes full advantage of her unbreakable bond to him. Her nights belong to him, but her days are free to explore other things… including feelings for a wolf she can never have.

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

Torment (Dark Alpha 1) is 60 pages or 15,000 words. It’s the first of six episodes in the Dark Alpha serial.
Adult content. Ages 18+.

Pleasure (Dark Alpha 2)Pleasure (Dark Alpha #2) – short story

Blurb: New Adult Paranormal Romance serial

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.

Jak and Arianna have found something special in each other’s arms… but is it something they can keep?

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

Pleasure (Dark Alpha 2) is 60 pages or 15,000 words. It’s the second of six episodes in the Dark Alpha serial.

Adult content. Ages 18+.

Guildhall Guardian: Thamesian #1 (Thamesians)Guildhall Guradian: Thamesian (Thamesians #1) by Aidan Ladsow, paranormal romance, mystery (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: SHE HAS JUST FOUND THE ADVENTURE SHE CRAVED FOR

Italian Art Graduate Gioia Di Terzi has left Rome for England, upsetting all her plans of a future as a Museum administrator. Now working as a civil servant, she settles into a British working-class routine which comes nowhere close to her dreams of English Gothic tales.
That’s before she discovers the Medieval Quarter of the city and steps into its Guildhall, a building which instantaneously fascinates her.
Little does she know she just crossed the supernatural underworld’s threshold…

AFTER CENTURIES AS A GUARDIAN HE MUST COME OUT AND FIGHT

In 1430, Roydon Thamesian made a pact with Vampires who saved his life and became the powerful Guildhall’s guardian.
Ruling the Medieval Quarter, he doesn’t know humanity anymore.
Until Gioia Di Terzi stumbles into his life and he becomes the target of unmistakable attacks from a Hunter…

511kNDVGIzL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-v3-big,TopRight,0,-55_SX278_SY278_PIkin4,BottomRight,1,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_Plea From a Stranger by Derek A Barrass, thriller, slight paranormal (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: A young woman’s casual visit to a garage accompanied by her young daughter; becomes her worst imaginable nightmare when the owner tricks her and locks them in his basement. June, who was once a nude model for lad’s magazines, is the dream-girl he believes has been sent by fate to be his. He is a psychopath who has killed his wife and the man she left him for. He also hides other crimes from his past which he believes he was entitled to do if anyone crossed him.

Songs_of_the_ManiacsSongs of the Maniacs (novella) by Mickey J. Corrigan, new adult, psychological thriller, dark drama, urban crime, romantic suspense (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: Who are we when we lose everything, including our personalities? From her office at a mental health institute in the tropics, a troubled young woman counsels deeply disturbed clients while coping with her own heightening concerns. These include frightening consciousness lapses, violent memories of a high school sexual relationship, a menacing stalker, and an annoyingly arousing visitor who may or may not be insane. All this on a single stormy day at a time when a new mental health disorder has become epidemic and is threatening to distort memory and identity, unmooring the validity of reality itself.

A seductive and chilling novella, Songs of the Maniacs takes readers on a fascinating descent into the abyss beneath the lush surfaces of contemporary American paradise.

jack5.500x8.500.inddBroken Dolls by Kitty Thomas, literary erotica 18+ (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Mina Calloway always finds herself in the hands of the wrong master: Gentle at first, then brutally sadistic and abusive. She no longer believes it’s possible to find a man who will be gentle with her. After seeing a kink-friendly therapist for months, the doctor makes her an illicit offer she isn’t yet smart enough to refuse: “Let me find you a good master.”

Brian Sloan is a borderline sociopath with a dark and brutal past. Only taking his sadistic urges out on the women at a submissive training house allows him to sleep through the night. When Brian sees Mina, she should be ripe for the picking, but her damage is too similar to his own. Can he fight past his demons to protect the one person he considers worth saving?

Note: This book happens in the same world as Guilty Pleasures with reoccurring settings and characters. However, it is not a direct sequel and it isn’t necessary to have read Guilty Pleasures first. If you enjoy this book, however, you may also enjoy Guilty Pleasures by Kitty Thomas.

Travel BitesTravel Bites by The Hungry Traveller, non-fiction, travel, food (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: Travel Bites is a collection of short stories that criss-cross the globe. It is the first work by The Hungry Traveller who has combined his two great life passions: travelling and eating!

The Hungry Traveller has been travelling for the last fifteen years and, along the way, has experienced many different sights, tastes, smells and cultures. Central to his travel experiences has been the role of food. Through his unique and very personal style of storytelling, you too can share in the highs and the lows of his stories from around the world. At the end of each story is a recipe for a dish inspired by his adventure.

Travel Bites will capture your imagination and curiosity; and will leave you yearning to plan your next holiday, adventure or escape!

The Hungry Traveller is a travelling enthusiast who loves to eat! When travelling, he enjoys meeting new people and engaging with locals to learn about their culture, history and the food that they eat. He is ‘currently between trips’, saving money, but always has his passport on hand, ready for his next adventure! He always likes to hear about other peoples’ travel experiences and your thoughts on his book!

Lady Smut Dark DesiresThe Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires, erotic, paranormal, humour (reviewed by Tina)

 The Immortal Longing of Brenna Bang by Liz Everly

When a vampire materializes through her computer, successful vampire-romance romance author Brenna Bang finds herself marked for inescapable passion with a tech savvy bloodsucker.

The Lying, the Witch & the Wardrobe by Margery Kempe

Jeanie tries to figure out how to unlock her grandmother’s wardrobe and uncover what happened all those years ago when the goblins came to offer their sensuous erotic fruits.

Sexsomnia by Madeline Iva

Jenny needs to unravel the mystery of what she does at night and who she does it with in order to subdue the sexual demon inside her.

Divine by Elizabeth Shore

Locked in an abandoned mental asylum, an ambitious filmmaker soon discovers she’s trapped with a Dionysian god.  He offers her a glimpse of astounding future artistic success—but it will only come true if she’ll perform an erotic ritual to free him.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00057]Concealment (The Cassano Series) by Scarlet Wolfe, contemporary, erotic, romantic suspense (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Victoria Hart is supposed to be the enemy. She is an undercover detective who infiltrated my hotel and casino as an employee to take down my illegal enterprise. What she doesn’t know is I am fully aware of it. The operation I’m orchestrating is monumental compared to anything her mind could envision.It’s the burning desire I feel when she’s near that I didn’t see coming. An unwavering draw to touch her, and the need to break down her walls is testing my restraint; however, nothing can stand in the way of my ultimate goal. She could destroy everything my brothers and I have worked toward to avenge our father’s death.To keep the upper hand, it is vital to know your enemy. How deeply can I go, peeling back her intriguing layers while still concealing the truth? How much of Victoria can I claim before she’s too close … too close for me to let her go? This novel ends in a cliffhanger and is for a mature audience due to harsh language and descriptive sexual scenes.

23006645A Desperate Wager by Em Taylor, regency historical romance (reviewed by Tina)

Blurb: Nathaniel Spencer, the Fourteenth Duke of Kirkbourne wakes up with an almighty hangover and a wager note in his pocket stating he has agreed to marry the Earl of Brackingham’s daughter. And he can’t even remember ever meeting the chit. Clearly his drinking has got out of hand.

Lady Sarah Steele is horrified when her father announces that the Duke of Kirkbourne has agreed to marry her and even more horrified that her father wagered her hand in a game of cards. Not only that, but the earl has not told the duke of the riding accident that left Sarah paralysed when she was sixteen. But he’s dying and she knows he wants to see her settled before the inevitable happens.

Despite Nate’s drinking and Sarah’s possible complicity in the earl’s plan, they agree to marry. But when accidents start to happen, the newly-weds must deal not only with the fact they are practically strangers, but they must find out who is trying to kill one or both of them. Nate’s drink problem and Sarah’s disability are only a couple of the hurdles they must face to find lasting love.

Werewolves of Shade (Book One)Werewolves of Shade (Beautiful Immortals #1) by Tim O’Rourke, paranormal romance (reviewed by Caroline)

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

Note: This ends in a cliff-hanger. Part Two will be released 13th February 2015 and is now available for pre-order.

For readers 16+

strands-of-sollus-3Strands of Sollus by Cheryl Suchacek, fantasy, erotic (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: A contract from the Order of Aurora sends Myst in pursuit of a stolen magic sword. The job soon finds her partnering with Lotus, the rightful owner of the sword, as well as two beings bound to each other, Tol and Grayoch.

In the course of their mission, the group uncovers that behind the theft are sinister forces bent on resurrecting the dark lord, Maridon, in order to overwhelm the forces of light and take over the world of Sollus.

Facing their enemies, Myst finds that not only does she have to contend with Maridon and his minions, she also has to deal with the growing complications of her relationship with Tol and Lotus.


Tequila & Tea Bags by Laura Barnard, contemporary, romantic comedy, chick-lit (reviewed by Caroline)

Blurb: Sent to live with her cousin Elsie in the Yorkshire countryside, Rose has only one thing on her mind; joining her friends as a club rep in Mexico.

When she hears about a council incentive offering the promise of free flights to the person who clocks the most volunteering hours at the local care home, she’s got her plan set.

But she doesn’t plan on bonding with the old ladies, going after the village bad boy and trying to persuade Elsie not to become a Nun.

Soon she’s questioning who her real friends are and whether her old life is one she wants to return to.

Can the village win her over and will she win the chance to leave it behind? Will she even want to?

The Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires ~*REVIEW,TOUR & AUTHOR POST*

Temptation: The Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires

Adult/18+ read

tourbutton_ladysmut

 

A HUGE welcome today to The Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires. We are thrilled to be participating in the blog tour for this publication which includes erotic and sometimes chilling paranormal tales.  I was fortunate to be given a review copy and you can read my review and find out more about the book and the Lady Smut blog by scrolling down. Before you do though over to one of the authors, Elizabeth Shore, to share her thoughts on a subject which is *cough*  *cough* one of my secret fantasies – outdoor sex. Tina ❤

Welcome to A Reader’s Review Blog Elizabeth.

Thanks so much for having me on your blog today! Seeing as we’re still very early into the new year, many of us in the western hemisphere remain shivering from the cold and dreaming about the day when we can walk outside into gorgeous warm weather. So how about if we really crank up the heat factor and think about the delicious decadence known as outdoor sex. C’mon, I dare you.

Oftentimes when people fantasize about really hot sexual scenarios, the great outdoors factors into the equation. And why not, right? It’s such a free feeling to be outside. No walls to close us in, no rules that must be followed. Walk around a tranquil forest and it can feel like you’re the only person in the world. What better place, then, to share the seclusion with the one you love than by doing the lovin’ thang? Or so the thinking goes. But then reality hits.

Picture this: there you are in a dense thicket of trees, wrapped in your lover’s arms, thrilled by the illicit moment. Clothes are recklessly shed, lips and tongues feasting away on each other, soft breezes blowing over your naked skin. It’s sooooo sexy! Except . . . wait. Ow! What just bit you? You begin growing aware of the painful stab of tree bark digging into your back. And . . . shit. Is that a spider crawling toward your leg?!  Suddenly the allure of the outdoors holds as much appeal as a tooth extraction and your formerly sexy thoughts turn dark and foul. Same scenario holds true if you’re on the beach. The sand sticks to your skin, covers your clothes, it’s even in the crack of your – ah, you know what I mean. Damn sand is everywhere. And talk about no hiding places on the beach, so be prepared to flaunt it if someone happens to come along. It’s at that moment that outdoor sex, you decide, is literally for the birds.

Of course, in my story Divine, in the Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires, outdoor sex is indeed the steamy treat we imagine. It’s a fictional story, after all, an escape from the harsh realities of everyday life. My female character has uber hot sex outdoors in a forest – and in a bed! Imagine that. 🙂

The thing is, having scorching outdoor sex in a romance novel means we authors can screen out bugs crawling up our characters’ tushes, or contracting a case of poison ivy, or – as a friend wisely pointed out – having the beady eyes of a squirrel staring down at you from the tree branch above your head. In books those issues aren’t issues at all. The heroine in my story gets seduced by a hot guy in an abandoned insane asylum, of all places. And before you start thinking that that’s the least sexy place you’ve ever heard of … well, just because it starts as an insane asylum doesn’t mean it stays that way …

I know that part of the appeal of outdoor sex for some folks is the same thing that makes others stay far far away: the possibility of getting caught. Sparks of interest light an exhibitionist’s eyes that someone might be watching him getting down and dirty. The bark and the bugs are of no concern if part of the experience’s allure is knowing that you might get caught.

The truth is, some people just like being naked outside. If you’re like-minded and couldn’t care less about staring squirrels or sand in your crack, be sure to check out my story Divine for sexy fun in the great outdoors

Hope you check out all our links below – come say ‘hi’ to us at LadySmut.com. And thanks again for having me on your blog.

The Lady Smut Book of Dark Desires

Lady Smut Dark Desires

When a vampire materializes through her computer, successful vampire-romance romance author Brenna Bang finds herself marked for inescapable passion with a tech savvy bloodsucker. (THE IMMORTAL LONGING OF BRENNA BANG, by Liz Everly)

REVIEW: Tongue-in-cheek Vampire Erotica

I loved this sexy and humorous stake on vampires and writers of vampire romance! It is told in the first person POV, the narrator being Brenna Bang, a successful author of vampire erotic romance.

Brenna is shocked when it appears that one of her smexy vamps has taken shape. If this is the case how can this be so? At first she thinks he is a figment of her lurid dreams, but he soon ensures that she regards him as 100% real in some scorching scenes! The heroine is a sassy author and I enjoyed her being paired with a sexy and possessive vamp, who considers her his and educates her in the ways of vampires! The dialogue between Brenna and her vamp is entertaining and there are some yummy erotic scenes and an element of suspense.

Jeanie tries to figure out how to unlock her grandmother’s wardrobe and uncover what happened all those years ago when the goblins came to offer their sensuous erotic fruits. (THE LYING, THE WITCH & THE WARDROBE by C. Margery Kempe)

REVIEW: Maelstrom of Magic and Desire

This is a very clever and well researched erotic read, which draws inspiration from Goblin Market, the Victorian poem by Christina Rossetti and the otherworldly art of Arthur Rackman.

In it Jeanie, a young woman, returns to her childhood home and is compelled to reveal the secrets of her family’s old oak wardrobe, which is securely locked and sealed. The tale is full of mystery, magic and burgeoning desire as Jeanie gets ever closer to her goal of opening the wardrobe and finding out its connection to the stories she heard as a child, telling of magic and goblins. The tale contains some sizzling scenes as Jeanie finally succumbs to curiousity, lust and temptation.

Jeanie feels little excitement in everyday mundane activities and comes from a long line of those skilled in magic. I loved how the author describes her reconnection to the magic that hums in her veins. The imagery used in the tale is powerful and I enjoyed the sexual awakening and liberation of the heroine. An original read.

Jenny needs to unravel the mystery of what she does at night and who she does it with in order to subdue the sexual demon inside her. (SEXSOMNIA by Madeline Iva)

REVIEW: Scarily Sexy!

This is the longest tale of the anthology and for me one of the most disturbing. Rest assured though it is also a very sexy and erotic tale with a satisfying conclusion.

In it the heroine Jenny, an academic, is suffering from severe sleep deprivation. A chance encounter with Nadia, who is researching sleep disorders, offers her a lifeline and a chance to get to the bottom of her lack of sleep which she is convinced is due to her sleepwalking. She is especially concerned about her activities whilst she is in this state. What follows is a tale which is erotic, romantic, sometimes humorous but also disturbing and downright menacing the closer that Jenny gets to the truth.

This tale sizzles and there is also the development of a romance between the shy and retiring Jenny and the outgoing Turner, who Jenny is attracted to but too shy to pursue. I loved the twist in their relationship and how it subsequently pans out, A really sexy and satisfying erotic read, with a hint of menace that added a delicious frisson of fear and excitement.

Locked in an abandoned mental asylum, an ambitious filmmaker soon discovers she’s trapped with a Dionysian god.  He offers her a glimpse of astounding future artistic success—but it will only come true if she’ll perform an erotic ritual to free him. (DIVINE by Elizabeth Shore)

REVIEW: Destiny and Decadence

This read took me on a real adventure, from a creepy and abandoned mental asylum with some deliciously gothic scenes to the decadent and debauched court of the powerful and sexy god Dionysus. There are some spine chilling and scary moments and also a host of highly erotic scenes involving the heroine Faith, Dionysus who wants to claim her and others. All you would expect from the Greek god of merriment and madness!

I liked that Faith, did not immediately capitulate to Dionysus’ desires, I enjoyed the banter between them and I loved the sizzling erotic scenes, which satisfied some of my secret desires. In all it is a fabulous debauched read with a spunky heroine and a tasty immortal who needs her to free him.

Reviews are by Tina Williams

Please note, a copy of the book was given to me for the purpose of  fair and honest review.

About Lady Smut: 

Lady Smut is a blog for intelligent women who like to read smut.  On this blog we talk about our writing, the erotic romance industry, masculinity, femininity, sexuality, and whatever makes our pulses race.

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