Genre: Urban Fantasy

Review: River Marked by Patricia Briggs

Posted February 20, 2019 by Rowena in Reviews | 4 Comments

This month’s prompt for the TBR Challenge was Series so I chose to read River Marked by Patricia Briggs because I am determined to get that entire series read this year. I want to catch up by the time the next book comes out so wish me luck on that. Anyway, on with my review…

Review: River Marked by Patricia BriggsReviewer: Rowena
River Marked (Mercy Thompson, #6) by Patricia Briggs
Series: Mercy Thompson #6
Also in this series: Frost Burned (Mercy Thompson, #7), Night Broken, Shifting Shadows, Blood Bound, Fire Touched, Silence Fallen (Mercy Thompson, #10), Moon Called, Blood Bound (Mercy Thompson, #2), Iron Kissed (Mercy Thompson, #3), Bone Crossed (Mercy Thompson, #4)
Publisher: Ace
Publication Date: March 1, 2011
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: First
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 337
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Reading Challenges: Rowena's 2019 GoodReads Challenge, Rowena's 2019 TBR Challenge
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Mercy Thompson is a shapeshifter, a talent she inherited from her long-gone father. And she's never known any others of her kind. Until now. As Mercy comes to terms with this new information, an evil is stirring in the depths of the Columbia River. Something deadly is coming, facts are thin on the ground and Mercy feels ill at ease.

Mercy Thompson brings the badass shenanigans again in River Marked. In this book, she finally marries hottie Alpha Adam Hauptman and they’re headed on their camping honeymoon where they will be completely alone and not have to deal with anyone’s problems…until they get to their campsite and have to deal with everyone else’s problems. The problem that they’re dealing with this time around is a river devil monster who is eating the people who are getting too close to her in the river. When Adam and Mercy happen upon an injured man in the boat and smell his fear, they can’t walk away and this river monster is unique and it is magic of the American Indian variety so Mercy and Adam find themselves getting acquainted with the local Indian tribes….and Mercy’s sort of maybe ghost of a father? Yeah, there’s a lot going on in this book and I thought Briggs did a great job of pulling this story together.

I really liked that there was a Charles and Anna partnership feel to Adam and Mercy in this one. They worked together to fight the bad guys and had only each other that they could trust completely and rely on. The wealth of love that they have for each other melts me at every turn and I just really love their love. Mercy’s letter to Adam at the end was the best way to end this book and honestly, I just can’t wait to continue this series. I’m low key annoyed at myself that I kept this on my TBR shelf for so long. But no more, 2019 is the year that I finish out this series. This was another fantastic addition to the Mercy Thompson series so I definitely recommend it if you started the series but haven’t gotten around to this one. It’s good stuff, I promise!

Grade: 4.25 out of 5

Mercy Thompson

four-stars


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Lightning Review: Storm’s Heart by Thea Harrison

Posted January 30, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Lightning Review: Storm’s Heart by Thea HarrisonReviewer: Holly
Storm's Heart (Elder Races, #2) by Thea Harrison
Series: Elder Races #2
Also in this series: Dragon Bound (Elder Races, #1), Storm's Heart (Elder Races, #2), Serpent's Kiss (Elder Races, #3), Oracle's Moon (Elder Races, #4), Oracle's Moon (Elder Races, #4), True Colors (Elder Races, #3.5), Lord's Fall (Elder Races, #5), Kinked, Lord's Fall, Kinked (Elder Races, #6), Pia Saves the Day & Peanut Goes to School, Dragos Takes a Holiday, Night's Honor, Night's Honor, Dragon Bound, Midnight's Kiss, Midnight's Kiss, Dragos Goes to Washington, Shadow's End, Pia Does Hollywood, Liam Takes Manhattan, Pia Does Hollywood, The Chosen: A Novella of the Elder Races, Planet Dragos (Elder Races, #9.8), Planet Dragos (Elder Races, #9.8), Lionheart (Moonshadow, #3)
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: August 2, 2011
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 305
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

He's a Wyr warrior, a god of storms. She's the heir to the Dark Fae throne. But desire will bring both to their knees in this all-new Novel of the Elder Races.

During the rule of her murderous Dark Fae uncle, Thistle "Tricks" Periwinkle found sanctuary among the Wyr in New York. Her ethereal beauty and sparkling personality won the hearts of the public, but after her uncle's death, there are those who don't want to see her ascend to the throne.

Able to wield thunder and lightning, Wyr sentinel Tiago Black Eagle has ruled the skies for centuries. His massive build and thunderous power make him one of the Wyr's best weapons. And he's sent to protect Tricks when she's almost assassinated in Chicago.

Soon, both Tiago and Tricks will fall prey to the stormy hunger that engulfs them—a passion that will shake the very foundation of all the worlds.

Storm’s Heart by Thea Harrison is the second book in the Elder Races series. We met both Niniane (Tricks) and Tiago in book one, Dragon Bound.

Tricks is the rightful heir to the Dark Fae court. When she was a teenager her family was slaughtered by her uncle and she just barely escaped. For over 200 years she’s been hiding in plain sight in the Wyr demense, rubbing her uncle’s nose in the fact that she’s still alive every time she goes on t.v. as the head of PR for Cuelebre Enterprises, the Wyr King’s massive company. When her Uncle Urian finally steps over the line and Dragos finally kills him, Tricks has to take her rightful place as Queen.

As one of Dragos’ sentinels, Tiago has known Tricks for years, though he doesn’t have the same close relationship with her the others do. Still, he cares about the little shit and he isn’t about to let her into the Dark Fae court alone. Amid Fae politics, assassination attempts and life in the Dark Fae Court, Tiago comes to realize there’s more to Tricks than meets the eye.

Another excellent entry in Harrison’s Elder Races series. I really loved the dynamics between Tiago and Niniane (Tricks). They balanced each other well..supporting one another and giving just as much as they took.

Although I enjoyed it, I didn’t love it as much as the first. I think because the plot revolved more around the political intrigue of Niniane taking her throne and less around the romance. That isn’t to say the romantic development was lacking..it just wasn’t the full focus. Still, I enjoyed them both and the political intrigue.

3.75 out of 5

Elder Races

four-stars


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Review: Wild Hunger by Chloe Neill

Posted January 4, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Wild Hunger by Chloe NeillReviewer: Holly
Wild Hunger by Chloe Neill
Series: Heirs of Chicagoland #1
Publisher: Berkley Books
Publication Date: August 14, 2018
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating First and Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 352
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three-stars
Series Rating: three-stars

In the first thrilling installment of Chloe Neill's spinoff to the New York Times bestselling Chicagoland Vampires series, a new vampire will find out just how deep blood ties run.

As the only vampire child ever born, some believed Elisa Sullivan had all the luck. But the magic that helped bring her into the world left her with a dark secret. Shifter Connor Keene, the only son of North American Central Pack Apex Gabriel Keene, is the only one she trusts with it. But she's a vampire and the daughter of a Master and a Sentinel, and he's prince of the Pack and its future king.

When the assassination of an ambassador brings old feuds to the fore again, Elisa and Connor must choose between love and family, between honor and obligation, before Chicago disappears forever.

Wild Hunger is the start of The Heirs of Chicagoland spinoff series. This is my first Chloe Neill. I meant to read the Chicagoland Vampire series years ago but never got around to it. Since this is the start of a new series (featuring the heirs of the characters from the Chicagoland series) I figured it was a good place to start. While the premise was interesting and the overall story good, the main characters were very immature.

Elisa Sullivan is the only vampire child ever born. As she’s grown up, she’s found it difficult to find her place in the world without constantly being judged by what her parents have done. She ended up going to school in Paris and taking an apprenticeship with a vampire house for a year after. Her first assignment is to guard the members of the Paris house as they travel to Chicago to a peace summit being led by her parents. When a vampire is killed the first night of the summit and a shifter is blamed for it, Elisa knows there’s something fishy going on. Determined to get to the bottom, she and her best friend, along with Connor, son of the local pack alpha, team up to investigate.

I really enjoyed the basic premise of the story. Trying to puzzle out how the fairies were involved in the scheme with the vampires is what kept me reading. Elisa and Connor were both pretty immature and didn’t do a lot for me. Elisa, especially, drove me crazy. She jumped into things without thinking and kept a major secret from pretty much everyone for the entirety of the book. She read more like an 18-year-old than a 23-year-old.

This read more like a young adult novel than anything else. As the book wore on, the immaturity of the heroine really began to bother me and detracted from my overall enjoyment. It’s possible I’d feel differently if I’d read the Chicagoland series and therefore had some kind of connection to these characters. As it stands, I doubt I’ll continue on.

2.75 out of 5

Heirs of Chicagoland

three-stars


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Review: Natural Witch by K.F. Breene

Posted January 3, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Natural Witch by K.F. BreeneReviewer: Holly
Natural Witch (Magical Mayhem #1) by K.F. Breene
Series: Magical Mayhem #1
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: January 25, 2018
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: Alternating First and Third
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 376
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four-half-stars
Series Rating: five-stars

The explosive new addition to the DDVN World (Fire and Ice Series) by USA Today Bestselling author K.F. Breene!

Something has always been missing from my life. A hole that I could never seem to fill.

When I accidentally turn a coven of witches into nightmares, I find out what that something is.

Magic.

And it turns out, I have a crap load of it.

As a latent power awakens deep inside of me, I’m exposed to one of the most powerful and corrupt organizations in the magical world—the Mages’ Guild.

Barely knowing a spell from a few swear words and luck, I won’t be able to evade them alone.

And that’s when I meet him.

The Rogue Natural. The best and most feared mage in the world.

He’s dangerous, mysterious, and has a vendetta of his own. He is now the only thing between me and magical enslavement.

We first met Penny in the Fire and Ice trilogy when she unwittingly turned a coven of witches into zombies. I do not think you need to read those books before this series.

Penny Bristol has felt her magic her whole life, but she’s never been trained to use it. On a whim, she signs up for a magical retreat where she might learn to harness and control her magic. What she finds is a coven of witches trying to perform a dangerous spell. Before she realizes what she’s doing, Penny joins them and turns them all into zombies. That’s when she meets Reagan and realizes she’s an extremely rare Natural Witch. Now she’s trying to get trained to use her magic, all the while on the run from the Mages Guild, a corrupt organization bent on using her for their own purposes. Oh, and the Rogue Natural, one of the most powerful mages in history has suddenly turned up, and turned her world upside down in the process.

The thing I love best about this series is how aware of her limitations Penny is. She knows she’s untrained and unable to deal with magical baddies, so her first response in every situation is to run and hide. That doesn’t make her a coward, just smart. She doesn’t run and hide, but she wants to. The fact that she stands her ground to protect those she cares about despite her fear really got me. Plus, I love the female relationships in this series. Penny’s best friend is an editor. For fun and to relieve stress, she walks around the neighborhood with Penny, correcting the grammar on yard sale signs. Though Reagan intimidates her, Penny forms a close bond to her.

The romance is light in this book as it spans the trilogy. I liked Emery and Penny together, and enjoyed watching them interact with each other and learn to merge their powers. Though I didn’t love the ending, I admit this was a wonderful story. I couldn’t wait to jump into the next book.

4.25 out of 5

Magical Mayhem

four-half-stars


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Review: How to Date Your Dragon by Molly Harper

Posted December 28, 2018 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: How to Date Your Dragon by Molly HarperReviewer: Holly
How to Date Your Dragon (Mystic Bayou, #1) by Molly Harper
Narrator: Amanda Ronconi, Jonathan Davis
Series: Mystic Bayou #1
Publisher: Self-Published, Audible Studios
Publication Date: January 23, 2018
Format: Audiobook
Source: Audible Romance Package
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance
Pages: 217
Length: 6 hours and 24 minutes
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Anthropologist Jillian Ramsay's career has taken a turn south.

Concerned that technology is about to chase mythological creatures out into the open (how long can Sasquatch stay hidden from Google maps?), the League for Interspecies Cooperation is sending Jillian to Louisiana on a fact-finding mission. While the League hopes to hold on to secrecy for a little bit longer, they're preparing for the worst in terms of human reactions. They need a plan, so they look to Mystic Bayou, a tiny town hidden in the swamp where humans and supernatural residents have been living in harmony for generations. Mermaids and gator shifters swim in the bayou. Spirit bottles light the front porches after twilight. Dragons light the fires under crayfish pots.

Jillian's first assignment for the League could be her last. Mystic Bayou is wary of outsiders, and she has difficulty getting locals to talk to her. And she can't get the gruff town sheriff, Bael Boone, off of her back or out of her mind. Bael is the finest male specimen she's seen in a long time, even though he might not be human. Soon their flirtation is hotter than a dragon's breath, which Bael just might turn out to be....

Length: 6 hrs 33 mins

How to Date Your Dragon is the first book in Molly Harper’s Mystic Bayou series. I generally prefer darker, more serious paranormal romances, but I was looking for a new audiobook and this was part of the Audible Romance Package so I figured why not. It turned out to be just what I was in the mood for. Light and funny, but not campy. This is one of the better audiobooks I’ve listened to this year. Amanda Ronconi and Jonathan Davis were both wonderful narrators. I especially enjoyed Jonathan Davis’s southern accent for Bael. I immediately downloaded the 2nd audiobook after finishing this one.

Jillian Ramsay works for the League for Interspecies Cooperation. She’s about to take a trip to South America to study were-dolphins when she’s suddenly reassigned to Mystic Bayou, Louisiana. The League is worried about how much longer Supernaturals can stay hidden, with cameras and cell phones and GPS everywhere. Mystic Bayou is one of the only places different types of magical creatures and humans have lived in harmony for almost a century. They want Jillian to do a study of the town and find out how and why things work so well. Her point of contact is Mayor Zed, but it’s the Sheriff, Bael Boone, she really sparks with. But things really start to heat up as she tries to discover how Mystic Bayou works so well despite closed-mouth townsfolk, and danger seems to lurk just around the corner.

I enjoyed Bael and Jillian’s romance, as well as the town of Mystic Bayou. The inhabitants of the town were so fun and quirky I couldn’t help but love them. Bael’s surprise and ignorance over how to court Jillian was hilarious, and I like that she was the one who wanted to keep things casual. There were several times I laughed out loud, and a couple times my heart just melted. I wasn’t at all surprised by who the villain was, but since I wasn’t here for that the lack of mystery wasn’t a problem for me. I was so into the romance and the fun, quirky town nothing else mattered.

If you’re looking for something light and breezy, this is a wonderfully done, hilarious paranormal romance. I highly recommend it.

4.25 out of 5

Mystic Bayou

four-stars


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