Genre: Urban Fantasy

Review: Hunted by K.M. Shea

Posted June 29, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Hunted by K.M. SheaReviewer: Holly
Hunted by K.M. Shea
Series: Pack of Dawn and Destiny #1
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: December 17, 2021
Format: eBook
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Point-of-View: Alternating First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 322
Add It: Goodreads
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three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Ever feel like you don’t belong?

Try being a hunter living with werewolves. I’m the definition of “doesn’t fit in”. I’m not Pack, but I’m not the enemy, either.

I struggle to survive among werewolves who are stronger and faster than me, and are competitive enough to break a bone or two for the sake of “fun.”

Greyson, their alpha, is the worst of them all.

Blatantly relentless and twice as deadly, Greyson rules the Pack and expands its territory even though it’s already the largest in the region. I just wish he’d stop interfering with my life. He’s got enough trouble of his own with his incomplete mate bond, but he’s made it his hobby to tease and test me at every opportunity.

Doesn’t my life sound fun?

When wolves from surrounding packs start mindlessly attacking the innocent humans in our city, Timber Ridge, everything changes.

Werewolves don’t turn feral without reason. Which means someone is making this happen, and they’re targeting our Pack.

I don’t like where this is going, but how am I supposed to stop a feral wolf outbreak when I’m just one hunter? Can Greyson and I set aside our differences to see the Pack through this?

Hunted is the first book in the Pack of Dawn and Destiny urban fantasy trilogy and is part of the Magiford Supernatural City world. It features werewolves, hunters, and fae, and is filled with humor, adventure, and a sweet romance that will have you laughing in delight.

Hunted (Pack of Dawn and Destiny #1) by K.M. Shea is set in the Magiford Supernatural City universe. I’ve read a number of books by K.M. Shea. What you see is what you get. There isn’t a lot of depth or hidden meaning in these books. If you think you know who the villain is or what’s going to happen next, chances are you’re right. I understand this is what I’m getting with a K.M. Shea book and I pick them up when I’m in the mood for a light snack of a read.

Pip is a Hunter, which means she and those like her hunt werewolves who have gone feral. When she was a girl her parents were killed by friendly fire during a routine op, and the entire community of Hunters turned their backs on her. A werewolf couple took her in and she ended up on the fringes of the Pack. She isn’t Pack, but they tolerate her and often treat her like a kid sister because her particular brand of magic gives them what she refers to as “Puppy Power-Ups”. I.e., they feel really good around her and often seek her out. She can’t help feeling like an outsider, though. She lives on the outskirts of the Pack house, isn’t invited on Pack runs and in general isn’t “one of them”.

When the Pack is targeted and members start turning feral, she ends up working with Alpha Grayson to figure out what’s going on. She has a lot of sympathy for Grayson because his mate-bond is incomplete and that hurts him, but she also hates him for replacing the former alpha. Being forced to spend time with him grates on her nerves and also makes her aware of him as well as her standing as an “outsider” in the Pack. Needless to say, she has conflicting feelings about him and the way he seems to force his presence on her isn’t helping.

I really liked Pip. Her feelings of “alone-ness” among the wolves really touched me. She wanted to belong, but she knew she didn’t. It definitely tugged on the heartstrings. I liked how the Pack treated her, though. She was like a kid sister they loved snuggling with. It was cute. I was also interested in Greyson’s backstory and what the deal was there.

I did think there was a lot of repetition and filler in the book, though. It just kind of went on and on. I’m invested in Pip and seeing where things go with her, but I wish the book had been cleaned up and a lot shorter.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

Pack of Dawn and Destiny

three-half-stars


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Review: Magic Redeemed by K.M. Shea

Posted May 11, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Magic Redeemed by K.M. SheaReviewer: Holly
Magic Redeemed by K.M. Shea
Series: Hall of Blood and Mercy #2
Also in this series: Magic Forged
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: March 20, 2020
Format: eBook
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Point-of-View: First
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 284
Add It: Goodreads
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three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

I thought life would be easier after I unsealed my magic. Spoiler: it’s not.

I want to free my family from my traitorous cousin, but with all the allies he’s got guarding his back, even my new powers won’t be enough to beat him. My best bet is to use my parents’ signet ring to prove my claim of leadership.

There’s just one problem…

I can’t find it!

Things aren’t looking so good for my vampire housemates, either. As Killian Drake’s conflicts with the fae get worse, it's clear that war will break out soon if something doesn’t change.

Plus, Killian has gotten really weird about smelling me and invading my personal space. Every time he comes near my heart almost pops out of my chest, but I’m sure that’s just terror caused by being so close to the most feared vampire in the region.

At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

So, I’m a wizard searching for a ring while trying to survive living with a bunch of vampires and their deadly and suddenly touchy-feely leader. Yeah, life is definitely not easier.

Hall of Blood and Mercy is an urban fantasy trilogy featuring all your favorite vampires, wizards, fae, and werewolves. It’s packed with humor, adventure, and a sweet, slow burn romance between a vertically challenged wizard and the most lethal vampire in town.

Much has changed for Hazel since she fled her house and sought refuge with the vampires. She has regained the full use of her magic and learned to fight and protect those she loves, but she still hasn’t figured out how to take her house back. The signet ring she needs to prove her identity has gone missing, and the council won’t swear her in as head of her house without it. Her traitorous cousin is still after her and she hates that her family is suffering while she figures out what to do.

To make matters worse, Killian is having trouble with the Fae, and there’s a good chance he’s going to war. As his vassal, Hazel will have to go to war with him, which means further putting her house at risk. If that wasn’t bad enough, Killian has also been really weird around her.

There was a lot of filler in this book that felt unnecessary to me. I wish this book had been better edited. So much could have been left out. I liked the progression of the story. Hazel’s training and her determination to figure out her magic was good. I also like Killian and his vampires.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Hall of Blood and Mercy

three-half-stars


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Review: Magic Forged by K.M. Shea

Posted May 9, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Magic Forged by K.M. SheaReviewer: Holly
Magic Forged by K.M. Shea
Series: Hall of Blood and Mercy #1
Also in this series: Magic Redeemed
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: February 28, 2020
Format: eBook
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Point-of-View: First
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 263
Add It: Goodreads
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three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

I'm one scrappy wizard. As someone with barely a flicker of magic, I've spent my life being mocked and surviving fights with bullies. But when my parents die in an accident, and I find myself responsible for our whole wizard house and family, I know my usual tactics aren't going to cut it.

The situation veers from bad to catastrophic when my backstabbing cousin stages a coup and takes my family hostage. I barely manage to flee, but the only supernatural willing to help me is Killian Drake - the most feared vampire in the region, and a far more deadly villain than the jerk threatening my family.

Is Killian sexy and charismatic? Heck yeah.

He's also so powerful that my flight or fight instincts kick in every time our eyes meet. And he's definitely using me as his personal magic detector in his feud against the local fae.

But Killian is also the first person to believe I might have more than just a scrap of magic. And if I can convince him to train me, I might get strong enough to free my family and get my house back.

I'm not sure what happens when a scrappy wizard is taught how to fight by a hall of deadly vampires, but I'm about to find out.

Magic Forged is the first book in the Hall of Blood and Mercy trilogy, which features vampires, wizards, fae, and werewolves. It's packed with humor, adventure, and a sweet, slow burn romance between a vertically challenged wizard and the most lethal vampire in town.

Magic Formed by K.M. Shea is the first book in the Hall of Blood and Mercy series, which is set in the world of Magiford, a Supernatural City in the Midwest. I read the Crown of Shadows trilogy last year, which is set in this world, but comes later in the timeline. I enjoyed the world enough to go back and start here.

Hazel is a member of one of the oldest Wizard Houses in the Midwest. Her parents were well-respected and loved, but she’s an outcast because she’s a magical dud. When her parents are killed in a car accident she has to become the head of the house as the only bloodline descendant. The fate of her house and her family rest solely on her shoulders. Unfortunately, members of her house don’t think she’s the best choice for the job and stage a coup. She’s forced to flee to save her life and those of the rest of her family members. She ends up the only place she knows she’ll be safe from those who would kill her or force her into marriage….with the Vampires. Killian Drake is the most feared vampire in the region. He keeps all of the other vampires in check, and there’s no way members of her family will attack him to get to her. As a vassal of his house, she’s required to serve in his household and render aid as he requests, but it’s worth it to buy some time to figure out her next steps.

Living with Killian and his vampires isn’t what she thought it would be. They train Hazel to fight and teach her to use her small amount of magic in ways she never anticipated. They also convince her that she may have more magic than she’s aware of. As Hazel tries to figure out how to save her house and navigate vampire politics, it soon becomes apparent there’s more to Killian than meets the eye…and he seems to be focused on her.

I struggled with the pacing a bit. There were times when it seems like nothing was happening and it was a chore to get through a chapter, then things would pick up and I’d read a 1/4 of the book before I realized it. Hazel’s desire to save her house was on the backburner for most of the book, which was strange to me considering that was the whole premise of the series. That aside, I did like the book. Hazel’s training was interesting to read about and I liked the mystery of Killian and what he was up to.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Hall of Blood and Mercy

three-half-stars


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Review: Witches Get Stitches by Juliette Cross

Posted February 21, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Witches Get Stitches by Juliette CrossReviewer: Holly
Witches Get Stitches by Juliette Cross
Series: Stay a Spell #3
Also in this series: Wolf Gone Wild, Don't Hex and Drive
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: July 20, 2021
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Point-of-View: Alternating First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 390
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Holly's 2021 Goodreads Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Violet Savoie has a plan. A dream, rather. To open her own tattoo shop, which caters to supernaturals in need of permanent charms. As a powerful Seer, she has the potent magic to cast every kind of spell. Except the kind to give werewolves control over their beastly side. And her business partner Nico needs help in the worst kind of way.

Nico Cruz has a secret. A motive, rather. To subtly stalk and seduce Violet until she finally recognizes they are fated to be together. Ever since their heated encounter in Austin on New Year’s Eve two years earlier, he’s been dying to get his hands—and his tongue—back on her body. He knows a woman like Violet can’t be courted in the usual way. Luckily, Nico has no scruples about misbehaving to get what he wants.

But when his former pack roams into town, and an old friend is far too interested in Violet, his focus shifts to the threat venturing into his territory. Nico may come across as the quiet, broody one, but the intruders are about to regret stepping foot in New Orleans. And when Violet goes missing, no charm or spell can keep Nico’s wolf at bay.

Witches Get Stitches is the third book in the Stay a Spell series by Juliette Cross, which features the Savoie sisters, powerful witches who own a bar in New Orleans. Nico and Violet had a connection in the first book, Wolf Gone Wild, and I was really excited to read more about them.

Violet is a powerful seer. She also has a unique gift – she can imbue tattoos with spells. She goes into partnership with Nico in a tattoo shop as she works on refining her craft. She and Nico had a passionate encounter, but she did a divination for herself and realized he wasn’t the one, so she’s been keeping him at arms length.

I have to say, Violet frustrated me. She acted very immature about her attraction to Nico. I wish she’d been more open and honest with him, instead of just ghosting him, or picking fights for no reason.

Still, I liked the underlying message about inclusion, and the way she and Nico changed things for the werewolves. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Stay a Spell

three-half-stars


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Review: Last Guard by Nalini Singh

Posted January 24, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Last Guard by Nalini SinghReviewer: Holly
Last Guard by Nalini Singh
Series: Psy/Changeling Trinity #5
Also in this series: Silver Silence, Silver Silence, Silver Silence, Ocean Light, Ocean Light , Wolf Rain , Wolf Rain, Alpha Night, Alpha Night, Last Guard
Publisher: Penguin, Berkley
Publication Date: July 20, 2021
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 384
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Holly's 2021 Goodreads Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars


NYT bestselling author Nalini Singh returns to a world devastated by change in her award-winning Psy-Changeling Trinity series, where two people defined by their aloneness hold the fate of the Psy in their hands . . .

Termed merciless by some, and a robotic sociopath by others, Payal Rao is the perfect Psy: cardinal telekinetic, CEO of a major conglomerate, beautiful—and emotionless.

For Canto Mercant, family and loyalty are everything. A cardinal telepath deemed "imperfect" by his race due to a spinal injury, Canto cares for the opinions of very few—and ruthlessly protects those he claims as his own. Head of intel of the influential Mercant family, he prefers to remain a shadow in the Net, unknown and unseen. But Canto is also an Anchor, part of a secretive designation whose task it is to stabilize the PsyNet. Now that critical psychic network is dying, threatening to collapse and kill the entire Psy race with it.

To save those he loves, Canto needs the help of a woman bound to him by a dark past neither has been able to forget. A woman who is the most powerful Anchor of them all: Payal Rao. Neither is ready for the violent inferno about to ignite in the PsyNet . . . or the passionate madness that threatens to destroy them both.

Last Guard (Psy/Changeling Trinity #5) by Nalini Singh follows Payal and Canto, two Psy with a heavy burden to bear.

The PsyNet is failing, and without the biofeedback it provides the entire Psy race will die. Psy Designation A, the Anchors, have been quietly working in the background of the PsyNet for centuries, until Canto Mercant, a Hub-Anchor, realizes they have to come together and gain a seat in the Ruling Coalition if there is any chance of saving the PsyNet. When he reaches out to Payal Rao, he has no idea she’s also his friend/savior from childhood – a brave, smart girl who stood up for him, and who he has been searching for ever since.

Payal can’t show her true face to anyone. There’s a manic, angry girl inside her she barely keeps leashed, and in her family, showing weakness is a death sentence. She’s shocked when she comes to face-to-face with Canto and realizes he’s the boy she never forgot..and apparently he never forgot her either.

As they’re forced to work together, they both realize the connection they had as children is growing into something new and solid as adults. But Payal can’t let her guard down, or she risks losing all control….

This is one of the better books in the Trinity series. I enjoyed Payal and Canto, their friendship from childhood and the way they reconnected as adults. I also enjoyed learning more about the Anchors, and seeing them work through the problems association with the decline of the PsyNet. Canto is paralyzed from waist down and Payal is neurodivergent. I loved the strong message about being different, not deficient.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

Psy-Changeling Trinity

four-stars


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