Publisher: Penguin

Review: Lake Silence by Anne Bishop

Posted February 12, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 6 Comments

Review: Lake Silence by Anne BishopReviewer: Holly
Lake Silence (The Others, #6) by Anne Bishop
Series: The Others #6
Also in this series: Written in Red (The Others, #1), Murder of Crows (The Others, #2), Vision in Silver (The Others, #3), Marked in Flesh (The Others, #4), Etched in Bone (The Others, #5)
Publisher: Ace
Publication Date: March 6, 2018
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: First Person
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 402
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

In this thrilling and suspenseful fantasy, set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Others series, Vicki DeVine and her lodger, the shapeshifter Aggie Crowe, stumble onto a dead body . . . and find themselves enmeshed in danger and dark secrets.

Human laws do not apply in the territory controlled by the Others–vampires, shapeshifters, and paranormal beings even more deadly. And this is a fact that humans should never, ever forget . . .

After her divorce, Vicki DeVine took over a rustic resort near Lake Silence, in a human town that is not human controlled. Towns like Vicki’s have no distance from the Others, the dominant predators that rule most of the land and all of the water throughout the world. And when a place has no boundaries, you never really know what’s out there watching you.

Vicki was hoping to find a new career and a new life. But when her lodger, Aggie Crowe–one of the shapeshifting Others–discovers a dead body, Vicki finds trouble instead. The detectives want to pin the man’s death on her, despite the evidence that nothing human could have killed the victim. As Vicki and her friends search for answers, things get dangerous–and it’ll take everything they have to stay alive.

Like many others, I was disappointed when I realized Lake Silence was going to be set in the world of The Others, but wouldn’t feature any of my favorite characters from the Lakeside Courtyard. While there is a passing mention of some of the characters, this novel features a new cast. Soon enough I was wrapped up in the story, however, and I ended up loving it. This read like one of the “Crowgard Cozies” the Lakeside Female Pack was so enamored with.

Vicki DeVine got a rustic resort near Lake Silence in her divorce. For the past few months she’s been working hard to restore it. Per the terms of the original sale, Vicki has to be very careful in how she renovates. The Others – shape-shifting beings who rule the Earth – were very specific in the deal with her husband’s ancestors and she doesn’t want to do anything to anger them. When her boarder, Aggie (a crow shape-shifter), turns up with a human eye, Vicki discovers a murder took place near her resort. While a human detective wants to pin it on her, The Others protect her. They’ve come to see Vicki as someone who can help teach them about the humans.

Vicki’s marriage was not a good one, and she’s still dealing the trauma of living with an abusive man for too many years. For her, the resort is a refuge. A place to rebuild her life as well as the crumbling cabins and overgrown grounds. I enjoyed Vicki’s personal growth over the course of the novel, as well as getting to know The Others who reside nearby. There are hints of a romance between Vicki and the owner of the bookshop in town, but merely hints. I wonder if Bishop will return to Lake Silence at some point in the future?

I was fully engrossed in the novel, and very much look forward to the next installment.

Rating: 4 out of 5

The Others

four-stars


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Sunday Spotlight: The Beast’s Heart by Leife Shallcross

Posted February 10, 2019 by Holly in Features, Giveaways | 3 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

I’m a total sucker for fairytale retellings, and Beauty and the Beast is a particular favorite. I have to say, Leife Shallcross’s The Beast’s Heart ticks all my boxes. I’m ridiculously excited for this.

Sunday Spotlight: The Beast’s Heart by Leife ShallcrossThe Beast's Heart by Leife Shallcross
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: February 12, 2019
Point-of-View: First
Genres: Fantasy
Pages: 416
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A sumptuously magical, brand new take on a tale as old as time—read the Beast's side of the story at long last.

I am neither monster nor man—yet I am both.

I am the Beast.

The day I was cursed to this wretched existence was the day I was saved—although it did not feel so at the time.

My redemption sprung from contemptible roots; I am not proud of what I did the day her father happened upon my crumbling, isolated chateau. But if loneliness breeds desperation then I was desperate indeed, and I did what I felt I must. My shameful behaviour was unjustly rewarded.

My Isabeau. She opened my eyes, my mind and my heart; she taught me how to be human again.

And now I might lose her forever.

Lose yourself in this gorgeously rich and magical retelling of The Beauty and the Beast that finally lays bare the beast's heart.

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Excerpt

From The Beast’s Heart by Leife Shallcross, published by Berkley, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright © 2018 by Leife Shallcross

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

Sunday Spotlight: February 2019

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About Leife Shallcross

leife shallcross headshot

I write mostly fairy tales and dark fantasy, with the occasional bit of soft sci fi thrown in for good measure. Even when I’m not working on something specifically fairy-taleish, a lot of my work draws on my love of traditional tales and folklore.

My first novel, The Beast’s Heart, was published by Hodder & Stoughton in May 2018.


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Review: The Good Ones by Jenn McKinlay

Posted February 8, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: The Good Ones by Jenn McKinlayReviewer: Holly
The Good Ones (Happily Ever After #1) by Jenn McKinlay
Series: Happily Ever After #1
Also in this series: The Good Ones (Happily Ever After #1)
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: February 5, 2019
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 336
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three-half-stars

A romance bookstore owner finds her own happily ever after with a single dad in a new romance series from the New York Times bestselling author of Every Dog Has His Day.

Ryder Copeland is an accomplished architect and one heck of a father...not to mention tall and sexy. He's everything a hero should be, and Lord knows, Maisy Kelly has read enough of her great-aunt Eloise's romance novels to recognize one when she sees one. But like all fairy tales, Maisy can't help but wonder if this Prince Charming is too good to be true...

Ryder is drawn to the shy, curly haired professor who hires him to convert the Victorian house she's inherited from her aunt into a romance bookstore. Attracted to a woman for the first time since his divorce, Ryder finds himself wishing for a future with Maisy that he knows is impossible. Ryder has never wavered from his plan to leave the small town of Fairdale, North Carolina, so he can give his daughter the life she deserves. But suddenly he's not so sure. And the closer he gets to Maisy, the harder it's going to be to walk away...

The Good Ones by Jenn McKinlay is the start of the Happily Ever After series, set in a small South Carolina town. It’s the first book I’ve read by McKinlay.

Lit professor Maisy Kelly is starting over after being passed over for a promotion in favor of her less-qualified, cheating ex. She’s determined to turn the old Victorian she inherited from her much-beloved aunt into a romance novel bookstore. She hires architect Ryder Copeland to restore the house – and add a turret – before the grand opening. Maisy cut her teeth on romance novels and she recognizes a true romance hero when she sees one..and boy does Ryder fit the bill. As a single father and a courtly southern cowboy, he ticks all her boxes. Too bad he isn’t in the market for a relationship.

Ryder knows he isn’t a good fit in a relationship – his broken marriage is proof of that. He can’t even bring himself to say those three little words to his daughter, much less a woman. He might feel deeply, but he’s never been good at expressing his emotions. If ever he was tempted by a woman, however, it would be Maisy Kelly. The shy, romantic really does it for him. But for Ryder, it isn’t just about his commitment issues. He’s moving at the end of the summer when his daughter goes away to boarding school.

This is my first novel by this author. While I enjoyed the writing over all, there were a few quirks that bothered me a bit. Such as the overly descriptive sentences and the overuse of similes. I also struggled with the pacing in the second half of the book. I really liked the premise and the slow-building romance, but I wanted something more to happen in the second half.

The story was cute story. I enjoyed getting to know the characters. Ryder and his daughter had a great relationship. He was a great dad who really cared for his daughter and wanted what was best for her. They didn’t always see eye to eye, but it was obvious to all that they were close and easy with each other. I really loved the friendships Maisy had. Some of the best parts of the book featured Maisy and her girlfriends watching movies, joking and laughing together.

Though I struggled with the pacing in the second half, I enjoyed the humor and sweetness of the story. The strong female relationships and sexy single-dad really worked for me. I look forward to the next book in the series.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Happily Ever After

three-half-stars


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Review: Vengeance Road by Christine Feehan

Posted February 4, 2019 by Casee in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Vengeance Road by Christine FeehanReviewer: Casee
Vengeance Road (Torpedo Ink #2) by Christine Feehan
Series: Torpedo Ink #2
Also in this series: Judgment Road (Torpedo Ink #1), Judgment Road
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: January 29, 2019
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 448
Add It: Goodreads
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Go zero to sixty in this dangerously sexy novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Christine Feehan.

Breezy Simmons was born into a ruthless motorcycle club—and now that she’s out, she’s never going to be that girl again. But when her past catches up with her, Breezy must go to Sea Haven to seek out the man who almost destroyed her. The man who chose his club over her and left her feeling used and alone.

As vice president of Torpedo Ink, Steele is ride or die for the brothers he lived through hell with. He never thought he’d find something as pure as his feelings for Breezy, or that keeping her safe would mean driving her away with cruel words that turned her love for him to ash.

Now, Steele won’t let her walk away twice. He’ll do whatever it takes to make Breezy his woman again—especially when he learns the real reason she came to him for help, and that the stakes are higher than he ever could have imagined…

This is the second book in Feehan’s Torpedo Ink series. This is a spin-off of her Sisters of the Heart series. In Bound Together (the fifth and final book), Viktor Prakenskii brings his motorcycle club to Caspar, which neighbors Sea Haven. All Viktor (Czar) and his club want is to make a home. A home that Czar has been promising them since they were children in Russian forced into “schools” that almost destroyed them.

Steele is the Vice President of Torpedo Ink. Steele doesn’t regret much in his life. There isn’t time for regret. There is one person he will never forget: Breezy Simmons. While undercover at the most dangerous motorcycle club in the country, Steele met the only woman that would ever be meant for him. It seriously fucked with his head when he found out that she was only 17. When it was time to bring down the club, Steele didn’t want her caught in the crossfire so he did the only thing he could. He chased her away with words he would never be able to take back.

Now Breezy is back and she has a message for Steele. Walking into Torpedo Ink is one of the hardest things she’s ever done, but she has no other choice. Her own father and brother has abducted her son. Steele’s son. Their son. She will do anything to get Zane back, even walk back into the life she has left and never wants to be a part of again. However, she doesn’t count on Steele’s feelings for her. Or that he would even have any feelings for her after the things he said to her when he dumped her.

Now that Breezy is back, Steele will never let her go again. He’s angry that she didn’t find him when she was pregnant, but he forgives her. He forgives her for a lot of things. WTAF? He’s the one that left her. He’s the one that ran her off. Sure, he gave her money, but still. WTAF. Steele drove me batshit at first. Literally I wanted to strangle him. When they were going to meet someone at the beginning of the book to get some information on Zane, Breezy walked out and saw everyone on their motorcycles. She never wanted to get on a motorcycle again so she just sort of froze. This was Steele’s reaction.

“What’s the hold up? Get a move on, woman. We’re going to be late.”

He got better toward the end of the book. It soon became apparent that Steele has severe PTSD stemming from his time in Russia. It was heartbreaking to read. Simply heartbreaking. Breezy (I really disliked this name. A lot), was always there for Steele. She simply let him be. She never asked more than he could give. She was just a calming presence in his life.

I really did end up enjoying this book when I started to understand Steele. Breezy had her own past to deal with and Steele was with her through every moment. These two needed each other. They just had to find a way that was right for both of them. In the end, it’s really about compromise and knowing that relationships are perfect. It’s life.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Torpedo Ink

four-stars


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Sunday Spotlight: Vengeance Road by Christine Feehan

Posted February 3, 2019 by Casee in Features, Giveaways | 7 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

I love Christine Feehan. Just love her. When I was reading Bound Hearts and realized she was doing a spin-off of her Sisters of the Heart series, I was really excited. Torpedo Ink is a motorcycle club and so much more. These men and women grew up together in circumstances that no child should have to endure. But endure is exactly what they did. They’ve been bound in blood and nothing can break their bond. They’re all very damaged, but in Torpedo Ink, they’re accepted for exactly who they are. I’ve really been enjoying this series.

Sunday Spotlight: Vengeance Road by Christine FeehanVengeance Road (Torpedo Ink #2) by Christine Feehan
Series: Torpedo Ink #2
Also in this series: Judgment Road (Torpedo Ink #1), Judgment Road, Vengeance Road (Torpedo Ink #2)
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: January 29, 2019
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 304
Length: 13 hrs and 52 mins
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Series Rating: four-stars

Go zero to sixty in this dangerously sexy novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Christine Feehan.

Breezy Simmons was born into a ruthless motorcycle club—and now that she’s out, she’s never going to be that girl again. But when her past catches up with her, Breezy must go to Sea Haven to seek out the man who almost destroyed her. The man who chose his club over her and left her feeling used and alone.

As vice president of Torpedo Ink, Steele is ride or die for the brothers he lived through hell with. He never thought he’d find something as pure as his feelings for Breezy, or that keeping her safe would mean driving her away with cruel words that turned her love for him to ash.

Now, Steele won’t let her walk away twice. He’ll do whatever it takes to make Breezy his woman again—especially when he learns the real reason she came to him for help, and that the stakes are higher than he ever could have imagined…

Order the Book:

AMAZON || BARNES AND NOBLE || KOBO

Excerpt

Deliberately, he inhaled, taking Breezy’s scent deep, knowing his woman could drive out every bad thing, every ugly place, the smells that seemed to follow him wherever he went and replace it all with her. It didn’t matter if it was temporary, she gave him what no one and nothing had ever been able to do.

Right now, his entire room smelled fresh and feminine. He leaned one hip against the door, looking at his woman lying in the middle of his bed. She’d always done that—curled up like a little cat right in the center of the bed. She had all that thick tawny hair and it spilled across the pillow, covering most of her face from his sight.

A thin sheet was pulled over her body and she shivered continually. Her knees were drawn up to her chest and her arms were held tight into her. He moved closer to her, leaning down to look at her face. She’d been crying, and his heart turned over. Still, there wasn’t a single line there. She looked like an angel with her fair, rose petal skin and the sweep of those thick, tawny lashes. He should have known she was underage when he’d met her. Maybe he hadn’t wanted to know, not with his body’s reaction to her.

He’d never had that—a real reaction—not that he could remember. His training had been brutal, just like the others’. The beatings. The sex. Learning to kill. He hadn’t had it like some of the others. Reaper. Savage. Ice. Storm. Maestro. They’d been nearly wrecked as human beings. He didn’t know how they’d survived—but then he didn’t know how he had. In truth, there were parts of him that hadn’t.

Steele couldn’t help himself, he covered Breezy with the blankets and then stepped back. All the way across the room to the door again. Away from her. Just having her that close was dangerous to both of them. He wanted her with every breath he took—he had from the first time they met. His body reacted the moment he inhaled her scent, fresh from the bath. He tended to get his way in all things—especially with her. Breezy had given him that. She might have continued if he hadn’t sabotaged the relationship.

He recognized what he’d done. He was intelligent. He felt he didn’t deserve her—and he didn’t. He’d sent her away as much for his own punishment as to save her. He was that screwed up. Now she was back, and he had to find a way to keep her. He’d tried living without her, and it hadn’t gone very well. He would be fighting her as well as fighting himself because if he didn’t find a way to keep her, this time there would be no survival for him.

He looked slowly around his room. He was a doctor. A surgeon. He’d had more specialized training than most doctors. Over and over, he’d violated his oath—his need—to heal others. He’d murdered his enemies, keeping his promise to the dead. He’d assassinated for his country. He’d been following orders—but it was still murder. He went after child predators, but he’d made the same mistake he killed others for. He hadn’t known her age, but then he hadn’t bothered to find out. He was guilty as hell—even if the law didn’t condemn him, it didn’t make him less so in his own eyes.

Breezy moved. Those long lashes fluttered. “Steele?”

The ache in her voice was an arrow piercing his heart. “I’m here, Bree.” He stayed right where he was, planted against the door, afraid to move. He’d walked into a room filled with enemies, never flinching, and would do it over and over, but this woman held the power to ruin him.

Torpedo Ink

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

Sunday Spotlight: February 2019

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About Christine Feehan

Christine Feehan is a #1 New York Times bestselling author multiple times over with her portfolio including over 40 published novels, including five series; Leopard Series, Dark Series, Ghostwalker Series, Drake Sisters Series, & the Sisters of the Heart Series. All five series hit the #1 spot on the New York Times bestselling list as well. Her debut novel Dark Prince received 3 of the 9 Paranormal Excellence Awards in Romantic Literature (PEARL) in 1999. Since then she has been published by various publishing houses including Leisure Books, Pocket Books, and currently is writing for Berkley/Jove. She also has earned 7 more PEARL awards since Dark Prince.


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