Genre: Paranormal Romance

DNF Review: Wild Irish Heart by Tricia O’Malley

Posted March 20, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

DNF Review: Wild Irish Heart by Tricia O’MalleyReviewer: Holly
Wild Irish Heart by Tricia O'Malley
Narrator: Amy Landon
Series: Mystic Cove #1
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: December 11, 2014
Format: eBook, Audiobook
Source: Purchased, Audible Romance Package
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Contemporary Romance
Pages: 258
Length: 5 hours and 58 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Holly's 2019 GoodReads Challenge, Holly's 2019 New to Me Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
dnf

It is time…

An ancient book, a power untouched, and a heart unloved lead Keelin O'Brien from her graduate studies in Boston to a small village on the coast of Southern Ireland. Determined to unearth the secrets lying hidden in the enchanted waters of the cove, Keelin has little time for a surly Irishman who infuriates her during the day and haunts her fantasies at night.

Inexplicably drawn to the woman who has stepped from his dreams and into his world, Flynn fights a stubborn battle against his increasing attraction for Keelin. Forces unknown have better plans for the two.

Only the secrets of the cove can show Keelin who she really is, the beauty of her mysterious power, and a love that will break the bounds of what she knows.

From New York Times Bestselling author, Tricia O'Malley, comes a new romance series set on the rocky shores of Ireland.

I started listening to this on audio, but switched to the ebook about 3 chapters in. The heroine was frustrating me, but I thought it might be the way the narrator was speaking for her. Sadly, that wasn’t the case. She was just immature and childish. She was supposedly 28 years old, but she acted like a teenager most of the time. Impetuous and headstrong, she rushed into things without thinking and even said things like “you can’t tell me what to do!”. What? You’re an adult, FFS.

The hero was a total jerk to the heroine. They’d been dreaming about each other and as soon as he saw her, he knew they were meant to be together. That pissed him off for some unknown reason and he ended up being an ass for no apparent reason. When she started banging on his chest like a little kid and he called her stupid, I just couldn’t anymore.

“Stupid?” Keelin hated being called stupid. Her Irish Temper kicked in. “Who are you calling stupid, you big oaf? What are you doing down here anyway?”
She pounded her fist on his chest and he grabbed her wrist with his hand. His eyes glinted dangerously at her as he held her hand captive.
“Obviously, I’m saving a stupid child from drowning.”
“A child? You, you jerk. Leave me alone.”

The premise was really intriguing – I love books featuring psychic abilities – but the execution was poorly done. Between the immature actions of the heroine and the asshole hero, I had to DNF around the 40% mark. I’m just glad this was a free read, or I’d be asking for a refund.

Rating: DNF

Mystic Cove

dnf


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Review: Carnal Secrets by Suzanne Wright

Posted March 15, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Carnal Secrets by Suzanne WrightReviewer: Holly
Carnal Secrets by Suzanne Wright
Narrator: Jill Redfield
Series: The Phoenix Pack #3, Mercury Pack
Also in this series: Wild Hunger, Wild Hunger , Echoes of Fire (Mercury Pack, #4)
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Publication Date: February 11, 2014
Format: eBook, Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 366
Length: 12 hours and 16 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
three-stars

A pack Alpha and his estranged, true mate wrestle with painful secrets, ruthless enemies, and their own irresistible attraction, in the sexy third book of the Phoenix Pack series.

Half-shifter Shaya Critchley may hold a submissive role in her pack, but she’s done taking orders. After her Alpha wolf mate refused to claim her—but committed to interfering in her life—she took off. Now she hides from him, posing as a human in a town full of anti-shifter extremist groups. She thinks he’ll never find her again, and that suits her just fine. But she’s wrong.

Nick Axton can barely control his feelings for Shaya, but he could never claim her—not if he truly cares for her. The degenerative brain condition he keeps secret would ultimately leave her with a burden rather than a mate. But when Shaya runs away, Nick can’t bear the thought of never seeing her again. After tracking her down, he discovers Shaya’s feisty and passionate side in the process…a side he’d never seen before.

Under the menacing gazes of territorial local packs and violent human extremists, Nick vows to finally claim the spirited Shaya…and despite her initial resistance, Shaya just might find his fiery determination to be the ultimate aphrodisiac.

Carnal Secrets is the third book in the Phoenix Pack series, and the start of the Mercury Pack series by Suzanne Wright. This is another book I thought I read, but didn’t mark down. The details were sketchy, so I’m calling it a new read.

Shaya Critchley is a submissive wolf whose mate keeps rejecting her. She’s done with waiting on him and feeling hurt when he doesn’t claim her, and she’s done not having full control of her life. Determined to start fresh, she relocates to Arizona and begins working in her friend’s hair salon. She’s just settling in and starting to feel content when Alpha Nick Axton – her erstwhile mate – shows up.

Nick is battling an illness no one else knows about. He wanted to stay away from Shaya for her own good, but he can’t fight the pull of her any longer. He’s determined to win her over, even if that means leaving his old pack and going it alone with her. As an Alpha, mating a sumbissive wolf, and making her Alpha Female means never really having full control of the pack, since she can’t disobey a direct order from someone dominate. But Nick is tired of living without her. But Shaya has been hurt one too many times by his actions in the past. It’s going to take all he has to win her over….if he can do it before it’s too late.

Shaya got on my nerves a lot more than the previous two heroines did. I understood why she felt hurt and angry over Nick’s rejection of her, but her “punishing” him for it went on way too long. The lengths she went to to push him away were ridiculous. The more she acted out and pushed him, the more immature she seemed.

There’s also an easy fix to the submissive Alpha Female problem. Turns out Shaya isn’t the type of submissive who has to obey more dominate wolves. That seemed a little too convenient and kind of lazy on the author’s part.

I liked Nick quite a bit. I really liked what a great alpha he was, and how people just naturally followed him. All these wolves kept showing up and sort of forcing him to become their Alpha, which I thought was hilarious. Despite being a natural leader and a dominate wolf, Nick doesn’t like people and really just wanted to be left alone with his mate. I cracked up every time they sort of out maneuvered him and he took another step closer to forming a new pack.

The suspense plot of who is after Shaya and why didn’t really interest me. I know others really like that aspect of these books, but I’m not a fan.

I would have given this a solid four stars if it hadn’t been for how immature Shaya was. As it is I’m going to give it 3.

Rating: 3 out of 5

The Phoenix Pack

The Mercury Pack

three-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Blog Tour Excerpt: Toxic Game by Christine Feehan

Posted March 5, 2019 by Casee in Features | 0 Comments

Toxic Game is book #15 in Feehan’s GhostWalker series. Feehan returns us to Joe Spagnola’s team and brings us the story of GhostWalker Draden Freeman. When Draden is infected with a disease that was created to kill the woman that is meant for him, Draden will do anything to save her. This book is different from the others in this series somehow. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, even when I was writing my review. It might have been the desperation of the characters, knowing that their deaths were imminent.

I hope you enjoy the excerpt!

Blog Tour Excerpt: Toxic Game by Christine FeehanToxic Game (GhostWalker #15) by Christine Feehan
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: March 12, 2019
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 416
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books

On a rescue mission in the heart of the Indonesian jungle, Dr. Draden Freeman and his GhostWalker team need to extract the wounded as quickly as possible—or risk spreading a deadly virus unleashed by a terrorist cell. When Draden gets infected, he forces his team to leave him behind. He won’t risk exposing anyone else. He intends to find the ones responsible and go out in a blaze of glory....

Shylah Cosmos’s mission is to track the virus and remain unseen. Her enhanced senses tell her that the gorgeous man eradicating the terrorists one by one is a GhostWalker—and his lethal precision takes her breath away. When he’s hit by a lucky shot, she can’t stop herself from stepping in, not knowing that by saving his life she’s exposed herself to the virus.

There’s no telling how much time Draden and Shylah have left. Racing to find a cure, they quickly realize that they’ve found their perfect partner just in time to lose everything. But even as the virus threatens to consume their bodies, they’ve never felt more alive..


 

Order the Book:

AMAZON || BARNES AND NOBLE || KOBO

Excerpt

The last of the helicopters had lifted from the ground, gunners providing cover for him, spraying the tree line to keep the terrorists from taking aim at Draden. Diego and Malichai used automatics to aid the gunners as Joe and Gino worked on the wounded. A rope was dropped down as the chopper circled back. Draden kept running as gunfire erupted from the cover of the forest. Bullets spat around him.

The chopper came slipping out of the sky toward him, coming in low, the rope flying like a slinky tail. Behind him, the forest went strangely silent. No gunfire. He didn’t stop. He leapt for the rope, his gloved hands catching hold, the jerk so strong it nearly pulled his arms out of their sockets. Still, his enhanced strength allowed him to hang on while the chopper began to climb.

He was twenty feet up when he felt the sting in his thigh, and his heart stuttered with instant awareness. He glanced down to see a dart protruding from his muscle and knew why the terrorists’ weapons had gone silent. They had a sniper, and he wasn’t armed with a bullet. He was armed with a virus. If Draden went up into the helicopter, he was condemning everyone in it to the same death as those in the village. Without real conscious thought, he let go of the rope, dropping out of the sky and back to earth.

Virus injection. It was the best information he could give them, so they would know to leave him behind.

Malichai was staring down at him, their eyes meeting as he fell away. He saw Malichai practically dive from the helicopter, but Diego caught at him, holding him back. Draden landed in a crouch, his enhanced DNA allowing his legs to act like springs to absorb the shock. He somersaulted forward and stood up, facing the forest, his arms spread wide. Let them shoot him if they wanted, but if they didn’t, he was infecting the bastards. He began walking toward the edge of all those trees and brush.

Draden. What the hell happened? Joe’s voice slipped into his mind. It was faded, as if the distance was already too far. He heard the helicopter circling back so Joe would be able to reach him. He pictured Joe holding a weapon on the crew. He could get that intense.

By the time he reached the trees, the MSS members had faded away, leaving him to die however the villagers had. He’d seen the reports the Indonesian government had shared with the WHO. It was one of the reasons his team had been in the region. Two team members were two of the leading scientists developing treatments, therapies and pharmaceuticals in the field of viruses.

Infected with the virus.

Draden had taken the time to finish both his doctorate and MD, to be an asset to others on his team. He’d dabbled in biochemistry but finished his undergrad degree, a BS in genetics. Stanford offered a dual MD and PhD program and he’d taken advantage of that. He’d gotten his MD as an infectious disease doctor and his PhD in microbiology and immunology. He found it ironic that he would be dying of a weaponized virus after all that work to earn his degrees. Determined to be of some use, he decided to record everything he could about his symptoms, along with any suppositions he might have before he put a bullet in his head. He’d leave final conclusions for them.

Tell Trap and Wyatt I’ll leave behind a recording. Don’t know if they can use whatever I find, but they should remotely be able to access my recorder without touching the device.

I’m sorry, man. Trap and Wyatt may have ideas.

Draden knew, just from the earlier reports, that their ideas would be too late. The virus acted too fast. He would be dead before Joe had time to make it back to the States.

GhostWalkers


Tagged: , ,

Blog Tour Review: Toxic Game by Christine Feehan

Posted March 5, 2019 by Casee in Reviews | 0 Comments

Blog Tour Review: Toxic Game by Christine FeehanReviewer: Casee
Toxic Game (GhostWalkers #15) by Christine Feehan
Series: GhostWalkers #15
Also in this series: Predatory Game, Street Game, Ruthless Game, Shadow Game, Power Game, Murder Game, Covert Game
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: March 5, 2019
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 416
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Series Rating: four-stars

On a rescue mission in the heart of the Indonesian jungle, Dr. Draden Freeman and his GhostWalker team need to extract the wounded as quickly as possible—or risk spreading a deadly virus unleashed by a terrorist cell. When Draden gets infected, he forces his team to leave him behind. He won’t risk exposing anyone else. He intends to find the ones responsible and go out in a blaze of glory....

Shylah Cosmos’s mission is to track the virus and remain unseen. Her enhanced senses tell her that the gorgeous man eradicating the terrorists one by one is a GhostWalker—and his lethal precision takes her breath away. When he’s hit by a lucky shot, she can’t stop herself from stepping in, not knowing that by saving his life she’s exposed herself to the virus.

There’s no telling how much time Draden and Shylah have left. Racing to find a cure, they quickly realize that they’ve found their perfect partner just in time to lose everything. But even as the virus threatens to consume their bodies, they’ve never felt more alive.

I wanted to like this book more than I actually did. Especially when I read this from Feehan’s website:

“This could possibly be the most romantic couple I’ve ever written in any of my series. I was surprised by both of them many times which made writing this book so much fun for me.”

I was super excited because 1) GhostWalkers! 2) Most romantic! 3) GhostWalkers! Okay, so I’m a little obsessed with the GhostWalker series, it’s true. I’ve come to expect a lot from the series. When I say a lot, I mean a lot. This one was so incredibly rushed. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t good, just that it didn’t work for me.

Draden Freeman is on a rescue mission when he is infected with a deadly virus. Knowing he needs to force his team to leave him behind, he does just that. His plan is to bring as many terrorist responsible for spreading the virus as possible before he dies. And he knows he’s going to die. The village the the terrorists took out with the virus attests to that brutal fact. Then he meets Shylah Cosmos, one of Peter Whitney’s orphan girls. She’s there on her own mission. While following him, she saves him inadvertently infecting herself. Draden is furious, but can’t help but be attracted to Shylah’s calm and acceptance of her fate.

Shylah is in the Indonesian jungle to track down the three scientists that are responsible for creating the virus. Her job isn’t to bring them in. Her job is to kill them and bring their research in. It’s only as her and Draden start working together that they realize that the virus wasn’t make as a biological weapon. It was made for Shylah herself. Peter Whitney doesn’t like when his girls escape and Shylah is the only one that can fight off whatever virus is injected into her body. It was only by chance that the scientists created a weapon to which there was no antidote. Or could there possibly be one?

The speed in which Draden and Shylah fell in love was a matter of days. The only thing that made in believable was that they both believed they were going to die. Otherwise it was just completely implausible. Even with Whitney and his imprinting of the men and women, it was still too fast. The rest of the book was actually pretty good, even the scientific part of it. I always admire how much research Feehan puts into her books. While I’m clueless as to whether the info is accurate, it sure seems like it is.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5.

GhostWalkers


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Guest Review: Crazy Cupid Love by Amanda Heger

Posted February 22, 2019 by Jen in Reviews | 5 Comments

Guest Review: Crazy Cupid Love by Amanda HegerReviewer: Jen
Crazy Cupid Love by Amanda Heger
Series: Let's Get Mythical #1
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: January 29, 2019
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 416
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Eliza Herman has spent years avoiding her calling as a Descendant of Eros. After all, happily-ever-afters are a myth. But when a family crisis requires her to fill in at her family's Cupid-for-hire shop, Eliza finds herself enchanting couples under the watchful eye of her mentor, Jake Sanders.

After Eliza accidentally enchants Jake instead, they set rules to keep his arrow-struck desire at bay. But some rules are meant to be broken, and before long Eliza is rethinking her stance on true love...until they discover a conspiracy that could destroy thousands of relationships--including their own.

Want to know a sure fire way to get me to read your book? Describe it as “Percy Jackson for romance fans” and I WILL buy it with lightning speed (see what I did there?). Crazy Cupid Love is lighthearted and funny and does indeed have some echoes of my beloved Percy Jackson, albeit for grown ups. There are some hiccups, but overall it’s a promising start to new series.

In the world of this book, there are descendents of Greek gods living in our times. Most of them hide their true nature; the only ones who have been “outed” to mortals are the Cupids–descendants of Eros who can do love enchantments. Eliza Herman comes from a long line of Cupids, and her parents and brother own a family business selling love enchantments. Eliza, however, is not a part of the business. She is seemingly hopeless at all of it, and her life has been spent accidentally enchanting people with disastrous consequences. When circumstances force her to join the family business for a while, she has to turn to her childhood friend and fellow Cupid Jake Sanders for help getting the necessary state license. Jake has long had a crush on Eliza, but when she accidentally enchants him, it seriously complicates her personal and professional life. Even worse, just when Eliza thinks she’s finally getting the hang of being a Cupid, she finds out there are bigger problems afoot.

What I liked most about this book was the world building. We’ve seen books about descendents of gods before, but this still managed to feel fresh and interesting. I especially enjoyed the love enchantments. The enchantments don’t turn people into mindless zombies who are unable to resist. Cupids don’t so much make people fall in love as just temporarily supercharge whatever attraction/pull they may already feel towards each other. Even better, when Jake accidentally gets enchanted I totally appreciated that he a) stays fully aware of what happened and b) still retains his self control. He doesn’t get overbearing and start pressuring her to do anything. He has been enchanted before and knows how to handle it, and he’s pretty matter-of-fact about it. In other words, he doesn’t fall in love with Eliza because of the enchantment, though that does enhance things. I really liked that.

I also really liked Eliza and Jake. Jake in particular is pretty dreamy. He’s hot and smart and funny, and I like that he has goals to help make the world a better place. The book is mostly told from Eliza’s point of view, but there are a handful of very short chapters in Jake’s perspective. It was a little unusual, but I liked that we heard from him so we could tell how he really felt, since Eliza spent much of the book misreading the situation. I liked Eliza as well. She’s funny but a bit hapless, and she’s a major klutz. For me it didn’t get too ridiculous, but I suspect for other readers it might be too much. The one aspect of Eliza I didn’t love was how she let her confidence be destroyed for so long. Most of her family was not particularly supportive, and I wanted her to stand up to them more.

There were some other things I didn’t love about the book, too. While I liked the world building that did exist, I wanted some aspects of the world to be fleshed out more (Jake’s former job, the Council thing, what other Descendents are/what they can do, etc). I also thought Eliza’s family was pretty one-note. I couldn’t understand why her supposedly close brother never stood up for her, or why he didn’t tell her about any of the stuff happening with the family business. Her mom treated her pretty cruelly and constantly belittled her for most of the book, but then she does a huge 180 at the end that didn’t make sense. The drama with her parents marriage also felt forced, simply there to give Eliza a weak reason to drag her feet with Jake. That was probably my least favorite part of the book–how long it took Eliza to commit. I could believe Eliza might not be a strong believer in love–I assume her line of work would encourage cynicism–but it went on too long. Jake was literally perfect and made it clear what he wanted. It was hard to believe that once the enchantment wore off Eliza wouldn’t accept that everyone’s feelings were real and that they could try and build something together. There is a valid reason for her acting pretty irrational towards the end of the book, but she spent a big chunk of the earlier book waffling for no good reason as well. It got a bit frustrating.

And yet…I had so much fun reading this book. I laughed out loud on many occasions, and I really liked seeing Eliza and Jake end up together. My head would probably grade this book a 3, but I so enjoyed my afternoon reading this that my heart wants to give it a 4–I’m averaging that out to a 3.5. I am interested to see what this author will do with this premise in the future.

Grade: 3.5 out of 5

three-half-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , , , ,