Tag: 3.75 Reviews

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: A Ruin of Roses by K.F. Breene

Posted June 6, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: A Ruin of Roses by K.F. BreeneReviewer: Holly
A Ruin of Roses by K.F. Breene
Narrator: Tillie Hooper
Series: Deliciously Dark Fairytales #1
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: October 8, 2021
Format: eBook
Pages: 386
Length: 8 hours and 46 minutes
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three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

A spicy new twist on an old classic - a deliciously dark Beauty and the Beast reimagining.
I could save him, but he would ruin me.
The beast.The creature that stalks the forbidden wood.The dragon prince.
He has suffered a fate worse than death. We all have. A curse put upon us by the mad king.
We are a kingdom locked in time. Shifters unable to feel our animals. Stuck here by a deal between the late king and a demon who seeks our destruction.
The only one keeping this kingdom alive is Nyfain, the golden prince to a stolen throne. The last dragon shifter.
He’s our hope.He’s my nightmare.
When he catches me trespassing in the forbidden wood, he doesn’t punish me with death, as he’s entitled.
He takes me, instead. Forces me back to the castle as his prisoner. Seeks to use me.
Apparently, I can save him. I can save the whole forgotten kingdom, locked away by the demon king’s power.
But it would mean taming the monster beneath his skin. It would mean giving myself to him.
It would mean my ruin.
_ _ _ _ _ _
This is a dark and sexy Beauty and the Beast retelling, featuring a strong heroine, a dangerous anti-hero, and a humorous supporting cast. It is a full-length novel at 80k words and suitable for 18+. This is the beginning of a trilogy and ends on a cliffhanger. Buckle up. The author was let off her leash.

I’m a total sucker for Beauty and the Beast retellings, and I enjoy KF Breene’s novels, so this seemed like a win/win. This is a fairytale set in a remote village without modern conveniences, so I was surprised at the modern way the female MC talked. That pulled me out of the story at first, though I quickly got used to it. The other thing that surprised me was how erotic this book was, though I suppose it shouldn’t have since it’s labeled as a “dark” fairytale. It just seemed to come out of nowhere. One minute she was being adducted by The Beast and the next she was standing in the middle of a wild medieval sex-club(ish thing).

All that aside, I enjoyed the story. Finely was a good heroine and I enjoyed the way she challenged Nyfain. I also liked the secondary characters and found myself laughing at some of the internal dialogue between her and her inner beast. It was kind of slow in the middle. I did not love that this ended on a cliffhanger. I know I should have expected it since 1) that’s how KF Breene rolls and 2) it’s right there in the blurb (which I didn’t read until after I finished the book, for the record), but I thought this was going to be a new fairytale for each book. My mistake. I’m probably going to wait until the full trilogy is out to continue.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

Deliciously Dark Fairytales

three-half-stars


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Lightning Review: Wild Wind by Kristen Ashley

Posted May 23, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Lightning Review: Wild Wind by Kristen AshleyReviewer: Holly
Wild Wind by Kristen Ashley
Series: Chaos #6.6
Also in this series: Wild Fire
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: March 9, 2021
Point-of-View: Alternating First
Pages: 255
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Series Rating: four-stars

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Kristen Ashley brings a new story in her Chaos series…
When he was sixteen years old, Jagger Black laid eyes on the girl who was his. At a cemetery. During her mother’s funeral. For years, their lives cross, they feel the pull of their connection, but then they go their separate ways.
But when Jagger sees that girl chasing someone down the street, he doesn’t think twice before he wades right in. And when he gets a full-on dose of the woman she’s become, he knows he finally has to decide if he’s all in or if it’s time to cut her loose. She’s ready to be cut loose. But Jagger is all in.
**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you'll enjoy each one as much as we do.**

Jagger Black lost his dad when he was too young to remember anything about him. He’s felt something like a fraud his whole life because of it. Everyone speaks so highly of his dad and compares them so much that Jagger feels like he’s letting everyone down by not having those same feelings for this man he barely met. He still visits his father’s grave regularly, though, and that’s where he connects with a girl he knows should be his. She’s there for her mother’s funeral and they connect in a deep way, though they never exchange names. For years they run into each other at random times, always leaving a big impact on one another, but never for long enough to even introduce themselves. Until the day Jagger sees her chasing a thief down the street and steps in to help.

I think I liked this story a bit better than the previous book. I connected more with A and I liked the way they came together better. The way Jagger’s “issues” drug on and on was frustrating, especially considering the quick resolution, but I really liked the romance and the family matters that were dealt with.

Rating: 3.75

Chaos

</a


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Guest Review: The Scoundrel’s Daughter by Anne Gracie

Posted May 2, 2022 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: The Scoundrel’s Daughter by Anne GracieReviewer: Tracy
The Scoundrel's Daughter by Anne Gracie
Series: The Brides of Bellaire Gardens #1
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: August 24, 2021
Format: ARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 336
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three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

When Lady Charlton is forced into becoming London's most reluctant matchmaker, sparks fly and romance ensues, from the national bestselling author of Marry in Scarlet.

Alice, Lady Charlton, is finally free of her dominating husband, but on the verge of her new life, she is trapped when a blackmailer threatens to publish letters that could ruin her. To protect the secrets of her past Alice must find a lord for his daughter, Lucy, to marry.

Alice reluctantly agrees to find the girl a noble husband but when Lucy arrives, she's difficult and uncooperative and has no interest in her father's scheme. A lord, she says, will only look down his nose at her—and she's having none of that!

Desperate to retrieve the letters, Alice enlists the aid of her handsome young nephew, Gerald, who in turn seeks the help of his former commanding officer, James, Lord Tarrant. James is soon beguiled by the marriage-averse widow and sets out to change her mind. And each time they meet, Gerald and Lucy strike sparks off each other.

To find happiness, Alice and Lucy will have to be brave and trust in each other and the men who are attempting to win their hearts.

Alice is thrilled to be alone.  She doesn’t have much money, but she’d rather that then what she had when her husband was alive.  Alice’s deceased husband was an ass (hereafter referred to as The Ass).  He belittled and denigrated Alice at every turn, especially in public.  He was horrid and when he died, he left most of his wealth to his mistress.

Alice is happy, despite her financial situation, until she receives a visit from a Mr. Bamber.  He is in possession of letters that The Ass wrote to his mistress.  In these letters The Ass wrote horrible things about Alice, even about their time in bed together during their marriage, that are most embarrassing. Bamber states he will release these letters to the public if Alice doesn’t do what he wants – which is to have Alice bring out his daughter in society.  Not wanting the letters to get out, Alice agrees.

After a rough start, Alice and Lucy soon start making the rounds of balls and routs to introduce Lucy to society.  Lucy is introduced as Alice’s goddaughter so this put’s Alice’s nephew’s guard up since he’s never heard of Lucy. While Gerald is looking into Lucy, Gerald’s commanding office when he was in the Army, James, has set his sights on Alice.  Of course after the marriage she had, Alice has no desire to marry again, ever.

This was my second time reading this story.  I liked Alice so very much and my heart went out to her.  After 18 years with The Ass she was done with marriage for good.  James really had his work cut out for him in trying to woo her.  He was a father to three girls, and I loved how much he cared for them.  They really came first for him and that was obvious to the reader.  I thought that Alice and James made a great couple though I felt their romance was on the slim side.  He saw her and decided she was The One and it moved quickly from there.  I did enjoy reading about their time together, but it was fast.

Lucy and Gerald were also perfect for each other.  Unfortunately, I felt there was even less of a romance between these two.  They argued constantly and then they were kissing and getting engaged.  Granted, Lucy thought it was a fake engagement, but only Gerald knew it was real. While we got to know Lucy, I didn’t feel like I knew Gerald all that much by the end of the book.

Despite my issues with the romances the overall setting and tone and writing in the book kept my attention and I enjoyed the story.  I’m looking forward to the next book in this series.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

The Brides of Bellaire Gardens

three-half-stars


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Review: Bombshell by Sarah Maclean

Posted April 27, 2022 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Bombshell by Sarah MacleanReviewer: Holly
Bombshell by Sarah MacLean
Narrator: Mary Jane Wells
Series: Hell's Belles #1
Publisher: Harper Collins, Avon
Publication Date: August 24, 2021
Format: Audiobook, eBook
Source: Library, Purchased
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 394
Length: 10 hours and 6 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

New York Times bestselling author Sarah MacLean returns with a blazingly sexy, unapologetically feminist new series, Hell’s Belles, beginning with a bold, bombshell of a heroine, able to dispose of a scoundrel—or seduce one—in a single night.

After years of living as London’s brightest scandal, Lady Sesily Talbot has embraced the reputation and the freedom that comes with the title. No one looks twice when she lures a gentleman into the dark gardens beyond a Mayfair ballroom…and no one realizes those trysts are not what they seem.

No one, that is, but Caleb Calhoun, who has spent years trying not to notice his best friend’s beautiful, brash, brilliant sister. If you ask him, he’s been a saint about it, considering the way she looks at him…and the way she talks to him…and the way she’d felt in his arms during their one ill-advised kiss.

Except someone has to keep Sesily from tumbling into trouble during her dangerous late-night escapades, and maybe close proximity is exactly what Caleb needs to get this infuriating, outrageous woman out of his system. But now Caleb is the one in trouble, because he’s fast realizing that Sesily isn’t for forgetting…she’s forever. And forever isn’t something he can risk.

Bombshell is the first book in a spinoff of Maclean’s Scandal & Scoundrel series. I purchased the ebook, then requested the audiobook from the library since I have a long commute every day. I really like the narrator, Mary Jane Wells. I did struggle with the first couple chapters of the audiobook because there are a lot of characters and names that are introduced or discussed. Since I didn’t read the original series, I wasn’t familiar with any of them and it was confusing trying to keep everyone straight. After the first few chapters I easily fell into the story. I ended up switching between the ebook and the audiobook.

As much as this is the start of a new series, I do feel like I was missing some key information by not reading the previous Talbot sisters’ books. I may go back and read the series just to catch up.

I really enjoyed Sesily. She’s woman comfortable with herself and not afraid to go after what she wants. I loved her friendship with the other Hell’s Belles, and how they worked behind the scenes to fight injustices. I also liked that she didn’t take responsibility for the actions of anyone else.

I also enjoyed Caleb. He was able to hold his own against Sesily, which was good considering what a strong personality she had. I did become frustrated with the way his “big secret” was hinted at over and over again, but not revealed. That’s a personal preference. I don’t like when the reader is kept in the dark, especially since I had already guessed most of it. The romance was sweet, but honestly it was Sesily and the Belles who stole the show.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

four-stars


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