Publisher: Lyrical Press

Review: Guardian’s Grace by Rebecca Zanetti

Posted October 21, 2020 by Casee in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Guardian’s Grace by Rebecca ZanettiReviewer: Casee
Guardian's Grace by Rebecca Zanetti
Series: Dark Protectors #12
Also in this series: Marked (Dark Protectors, #7), Fated (Dark Protectors, #1), Claimed (Dark Protectors, #2), Hunted (Dark Protectors, #3), Consumed (Dark Protectors, #4), Provoked (Dark Protectors, #5), Marked (Dark Protectors, #7), Shadowed (Dark Protectors, #6), Vampire's Faith (Dark Protectors, #8), Demon's Mercy (Dark Protectors, #9), Alpha's Promise, Hero's Haven
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Publication Date: October 13, 2020
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 346
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Casee's 2020 Goodreads Challenge, Goodreads Challenge
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three-stars
Series Rating: four-stars


Duty—or desire?

Vampire soldier Adare O’Cearbhaill’s default setting is cranky. Or irritated. Or down-right hostile. Still, as a Highlander of honor and duty he stepped up to save an enhanced and special human female by mating her—with merely a bite and a brand. The last person he wants in his life is a fragile human, yet he can’t get her out of his mind as she regains her strength before taking off for parts unknown. And when he discovers she is in danger, nothing can stop him from hunting her down—whether she likes it or not.

There’s only one way to find out . . .

Photographer Grace Cooper has had it with vampires, demons, and the rest of an immortal world she was happier not knowing about. She also doesn’t believe she’s destined for some great battle because of an old birthmark. Forget the fact that her mate is the sexiest thing on two stubborn feet, or that her brand is fading along with her health. She’ll handle things on her own—until an old enemy reappears and she learns the only way to stay alive is to actually mate, wild sex and all, with that ripped and dangerous Adare—a powerful, captivating Highlander who demands nothing less than everything . . .

Guardian’s Grace is book twelve in Zanetti’s Dark Protector series. Adare and Grace’s arc started a few books ago.

Adare knew it was his duty to mate with Grace. It was the only way to pull her out of the coma she was in. Grace doesn’t remember anything about the attack that put her in a coma. She knows her sister, she knows her childhood, but everything after that is a blur. Grace didn’t even know the Realm existed until she was mated to a vampire. Now she’s firmly in their world even if she doesn’t want to be. Grace is a Key, one of three women that can open the Lock. Too bad no one knows what exactly the Keys are or how they’re going to open the Lock.

Five years have passed since Adare and Grace mated. Grace took off to parts unknown. She wanted to live her own life away from the maddening Adare. When Grace starts looking for vampire blood to heal someone she knows, the Seven immediately take action. Imagine Adare’s surprise when he finds his mate trying to buy another vampire’s blood. He’s infuriated until he sees what bad shape Grace is in. Instead of thriving, Grace seems to be sick and she’s unable to heal herself.

Grace knows she’s dying. She’s unable to heal herself, something she was able to do in the past. Her mating mark is disappearing. She knows it’s only a matter of time before she’s back in a coma. Adare was the one that pulled her out and the only one that can stop it from happening again. Before she dies, Grace is determined to get answers about her attack. She returns to the scene of the crime in Denver and starts digging for answers. It was pretty stupid of her to go off on her own. The Kurjans are looking for her, as are the Cyst who are a religious offshoot of the Kurjans.

This was a sweet story, but it just didn’t pack the punch that I thought it would. Adare and Grace were extremely interesting in the previous books. In this book they were just meh. I did like how confident Adare was about saving Grace. Honestly, that was one of his best qualities. What they were told by the doctors didn’t concern him. He is one of the Seven and Grace is a Key. To save Grace, they’ll have to mate again. This time they need to go all the way for the win.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Dark Protectors

three-stars


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Review: Hero’s Haven by Rebecca Zanetti

Posted January 27, 2020 by Casee in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Hero’s Haven by Rebecca ZanettiReviewer: Casee
Hero's Haven by Rebecca Zanetti
Series: Dark Protectors #11
Also in this series: Marked (Dark Protectors, #7), Fated (Dark Protectors, #1), Claimed (Dark Protectors, #2), Hunted (Dark Protectors, #3), Consumed (Dark Protectors, #4), Provoked (Dark Protectors, #5), Marked (Dark Protectors, #7), Shadowed (Dark Protectors, #6), Vampire's Faith (Dark Protectors, #8), Demon's Mercy (Dark Protectors, #9), Alpha's Promise, Guardian's Grace
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Publication Date: January 21, 2020
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 336
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Casee's 2019 GoodReads Challenge
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

He’s her darkest fantasy. . .

After years of struggling, Haven Daly has finally accepted that she’s nuttier than a fruitcake. Why else would she see visions of a beautiful but tormented male every night . . . and actually believe she can talk to him, even feel his touch? But thanks to those dream journeys, she can paint images nobody else on earth can duplicate. In each brush stroke, she captures the blatant masculinity and raw desire in his eyes that promise he’s coming for her…and soon.

She’s the light that keeps him going. . .

Hero’s Haven is book eleven in Zanetti’s Dark Protectors series. I’ve enjoyed this series since I first read Fated, the first book in the series. In Vampire’s Faith, which is book eight, a new story arc began and I’m loving it.

Quade Kayrs is a member of The Seven. Quade sacrificed himself thousands of years ago to keep an evil Kurjan priest from going into the world. The priest (I totally forget his name) wants nothing more than to kill all the enhanced women on earth. If he succeeds, vampires and shapeshifters will be unable to mate. Along with his brother Ronan, they trap the evil guy in a bubble and surround him with their own bubbles. I hope that makes sense because it seems kind of convoluted to me.

While Ronan’s bubble failed, Quade’s remains. Most people would say he’s gone mad and they would be right. Dying again and again only to resuscitate would drive any being mad. The only thing that gives him a little peace is the woman that visits in his dreams. It’s when his brother Ivar visits his world that he realizes that Haven is not a figment of his imagination. She’s a real person. His brothers are trying to use him to find her and that’s something that Quade won’t allow, crazy or not.

Haven Daly has accepted that she’s bonkers. She’s dreamed about a man for years, thinking she actually sees and feels him. It’s when she actually throws them both through a portal and back to her house that Haven knows that she’s cracked up. There’s no way that is possible. Right? Wrong. It’s obvious that Quade is flesh and blood. When he tells her that she isn’t human, she doesn’t question it. She’s a freak.

I did enjoy the romance part of the book, but I loved the fighting and the reuniting of the brothers. I love reading where the story is going and can’t wait until the next book comes out.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Dark Protectors

four-stars


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Review: Alpha’s Promise by Rebecca Zanetti

Posted July 8, 2019 by Casee in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Alpha’s Promise by Rebecca ZanettiReviewer: Casee
Alpha's Promise by Rebecca Zanetti
Series: Dark Protectors #10
Also in this series: Marked (Dark Protectors, #7), Fated (Dark Protectors, #1), Claimed (Dark Protectors, #2), Hunted (Dark Protectors, #3), Consumed (Dark Protectors, #4), Provoked (Dark Protectors, #5), Marked (Dark Protectors, #7), Shadowed (Dark Protectors, #6), Vampire's Faith (Dark Protectors, #8), Demon's Mercy (Dark Protectors, #9), Hero's Haven, Guardian's Grace
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Publication Date: June 25, 2019
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Pages: 345
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Casee's 2019 GoodReads Challenge
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

To hell and back . . . Though he has vampire, demon, and Viking blood rushing through his veins, Ivar Kjeidsen’s soul-crushing trip to hell broke him in ways he can barely fathom.  One vow keeps the deadly immortal standing: To rescue the vampire brother who had sacrificed freedom for him.  To do that, Ivar needs the help of a brilliant physicist with wary brown eyes, fierce brilliance, and skin that's way too soft.

Dr. Promise Williams understands the underpinnings of the universe but has never figured out the human beings inhabiting it.   Her function is to think—and not feel—until she’s touched by a vampire who’s nowhere near human. The primal hunger in his eyes awakens feelings in her that defy calculation. As she shows him the way to step between worlds, he brands her with a pleasure that could last more than a lifetime . . .

Vampire’s Faith (Dark Protectors #8) starts the Dark Protectors series on a new arc. It brings the us the Seven. Seven warriors who scarified everything to protect the world from a religious sect of the Kurjan vampires. If their leader is free from the bubble world that they trapped him in, enhanced females all over the world can be killed. As it stands Quade, the leader of the Seven is in his own bubble world, which is balancing out the other world. But his world is about to fail.

Ivar Kjeidsen went through hell in Demon’s Mercy. Thrown through a portal, he went through a thousand years of hell in only a few weeks on earth. By the time he made it back to his brothers, he knew only one thing. He had to free Quade even if it meant taking his place. To do this, he would do whatever it took. Even kidnapping Dr. Promise Williams.

Someone has been killing Promise’s female colleagues. So when a man bursts into her car with a gun, she does what any sane woman would do. She guns the engine and runs into a police car, sending the kidnapper through the windshield. Unfortunately, he gets away. Promise has no idea what she’s gotten herself into, but she’s all about work and figures it was a fluke. Seriously, a fluke.

I really had a hard time with Promise with most of the book. She was a really hard character to connect with at first. She was all about logic and what would be best for science. She wanted to mate with Ivar because she wanted to be immortal. If she was immortal she would be able to study science forever and ever amen. Who thinks like that?

Luckily for Promise (and me), Ivar is far from logical. In fact, he’s all alpha all the way. He rips Promise out of her scientific bubble and shows her what the real world is like. When Promise is in Ivar’s world, the science looks different. Ivar is certain that she can help him get to Quade. But will she?

I ended up liking Promise by the end of the book. She ended up being good enough for Ivar, but it was a long time in coming. At first Ivar came off as a martyr, wanting to change places with Quade. That wasn’t it. Ivar is convinced that their war with the Kurjans needs Quade leading the Seven. Now they just have to find out how to get him out. It’s a good thing that Quade’s book is next.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5.

Dark Protectors

four-stars


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Guest Review: It Only Takes a Kiss by Wilma Counts

Posted April 4, 2019 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: It Only Takes a Kiss by Wilma CountsReviewer: Tracy
It Only Takes a Kiss by Wilma Counts
Series: Once Upon a Bride #2
Also in this series: My Fair Lord (Once Upon a Bride #1)
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Publication Date: October 16, 2018
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Historical Romance
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three-half-stars
Series Rating: three-stars

Best friends since their schooldays, Henrietta, Harriet, and Hero are wise and witty young ladies, embarking on the sometimes bumpy road to happily-ever-after, each in her own brilliant way...

Hero Whitby has harbored long-buried fears since a devastating attack by two young men of the privileged class. Now, while her peers aspire to husband-hunting, Hero pursues her passion to be a doctor, working alongside her father, a respected Devonshire physician. But when a badly beaten stranger is carried in to his practice, Hero is stunned by her reaction. Over three days of tending to the man, along with her instinct to heal, she finds herself intensely drawn to him.

Robbed and left for dead for highwaymen, Alexander Sterne has no memory of his past as a soldier in Wellington's army—or as a carousing playboy. But as he becomes aware of his surroundings and the plight of the locals, Alex realizes only he can break the corrupt hold of an evil land steward. And when Hero's tender kiss awakens him from sleep—and restores his identity—he knows that he must regain not only his strength but a newfound compassion...which can only be ignited by Hero and a meeting of hearts that may heal them both.

Hero is considered on the shelf and as such is living with her doctor father in his place in Cornwall.  She wants to be a doctor herself and has learned almost everything she needs to know from her father.  She’s woken up one night by locals who found a beaten man by the side of the road.  He is completely built, and Hero can’t help from noticing how beautiful his body is (how unprofessional, Hero!).

The man eventually wakes up and doesn’t remember his past.  When he returned from the war he had pretty bad PTSD so that might be a good thing.  He eventually remembers and figures out that he is the third son of a duke and was arriving in Cornwall incognito.  He was to check the books of the land steward of his very own holdings.  Because the land steward isn’t on the up and up, they attacked the “bookkeeper” and left him for dead.

The land steward turned out to be a very bad guy and was threatening to evict people from the land if they didn’t help him with his smuggling ring – this included part of Hero’s family.

I liked this story. I found the whole smuggling/land steward/amnesia story really worked for me.  I thought that Counts did a great job with all of that. She wrote a story that kept my attention and I wanted to keep reading.

Unfortunately I didn’t feel as strongly about the romance in the story.  While I liked both Hero and Alex, I wasn’t feeling it between them.  Hero knew Alex by reputation, since he’d never actually been to that particular holding since he’d inherited it.  She knew the owner was a drunkard and a rake, and thought him the lowest of lows.  When she found out that Alex was the owner, she was pissed.  Of course, Alex had lied to her, but still, she should have listened when he’d said he’d changed.

In the end I found the book to be satisfying, but not as satisfying as I thought it would be at the beginning.  I was disappointed that the second half of the book wasn’t as good as the first half.  I still think it’s worth reading if you like smuggling stories.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Once Upon a Bride

three-half-stars


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Guest Review: More or Less a Countess by Anna Bradley

Posted August 6, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: More or Less a Countess by Anna BradleyReviewer: Tracy
More or Less a Countess (The Somerset Sisters #2) by Anna Bradley
Series: The Somerset Sisters #2
Publisher: Lyrical Press
Publication Date: August 7, 2018
Format: eARC
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Historical Romance
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three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Finding a worthy husband should be simple for three beautiful debutantes in Regency London. But the Somerset sisters have a way of making it delightfully complicated...

Violet Somerset has always preferred a library to a ballroom, but to please her grandmother she agreed to one London season. With nothing to show for it but heartbreak, she's reconciled to spinsterhood. Until a notorious rogue known as the Devil of Dare requests an introduction to her timid, gentle youngest sister, Hyacinth. Violet will do anything to stop the match—even if it means posing as Hyacinth herself.

Nicholas Balfour, the Earl of Dare, is enjoying the life of a rake far too much to take a wife. But he must keep his promise to his grandmother. He'll simply choose the meekest bride he can find, install her at his estate, then carry on as before. Hyacinth sounds perfect—until he discovers that her sweet demeanor hides the tongue of a viper and the mind of a bluestocking.

As Violet's ruse threatens to unravel, however, she may find the tables turned. Soon she may have no choice but to tolerate her handsome fiancée—or fall in love with him.

Nicholas Balfour, the Earl of Dare hates England. He’s been in Italy for years, since his brother died, and he never wanted to return.  Now his father is dead and he returns to England to assume the title.  Unfortunately his aunt holds all of the purse strings and she’s demanding he stay in England, find a bride, and get an heir.  Nicholas hates that he has to comply in order to live the life he wants but he agrees.  He decides he’ll find a woman, propose, get a baby in her and get back to Italy and his mistress within a few months.

Nick is at a dinner party with an old friend when he hears Hyacinth Somerset play the pianoforte.  He’s entranced and immediately thinks to court her.  He even thinks she’s pretty.  He approaches her, even though they’ve not been introduced and asks to call on her the following day. She refuses.  He’s shocked but not too put off and returns the next day.  When he finds that Hyacinth’s grandmother is gone he asks for Miss Somerset, not realizing that he’s asking for Hyacinth’s sister, Violet – the woman he was actually speaking with the night before.  He couldn’t tell Violet and Hyacinth apart (even though they’re not twins) and since Violet would do anything to protect her incredibly shy younger sister she went along with acting like Hyacinth.

Violet is a bluestocking.  She is writing a book and sketching pictures of the famous places in London. Her grandmother says that some of the places she wants to go to aren’t ladylike, so she won’t allow her to go.  Violet wants nothing to do with Nick.  He’s a rake and she wants him gone.  He keeps asking if he can call and she keeps refusing and he keeps showing up.  She finally realizes that she can use him to her advantage.  She agrees to go driving with him but directs him to the places that she wants to go.  Nick is horrified at first but then the longer he gets to know Hyacinth, the more he likes her.  In fact he starts to fall in love, which was never in his plans.  When he finds out that he’s been courting Violet, however, he’s not sure love will be enough.

This was a really cute story.  I really liked Nick even though he was a rake.  Yes, he wasn’t nice at first, only thinking of himself, but he was so kind to Violet.  I loved how he started to appreciate her quirks and even planned outings that he would never have taken another lady on.  Yes, he started out being an ass but then I started to feel bad for him because Violet wasn’t coming clean about her identity.

Violet was interesting. Like most bluestockings in romance novels she was single-minded in her endeavors. I really didn’t like her pulling the wool over Nick’s eyes and wanted her to come clean, but we don’t always get what we want. Lol.  Despite those issues I really liked her.  She had a great personality and I liked her a lot.

This was a good story and while I didn’t read book one in this series I’m positive I’ll be reading the next one when it comes out.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

The Somerset Sisters

three-half-stars


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