Tag: 4.25 Reviews

Review: Coldest Fire by Juliette Cross

Posted June 25, 2021 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Coldest Fire by Juliette CrossReviewer: Holly
Coldest Fire by Juliette Cross
Series: Dominion #3
Also in this series: Darkest Heart, Hardest Fall
Publisher: Entangled, Entangled: Amara
Publication Date: November 14, 2019
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: No
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal Romance
Pages: 234
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Holly's 2021 Goodreads Challenge
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Archangel Uriel is hell bent on revenge on the demon prince Vladek. To get into the prince’s impenetrable fortress, he’ll have to fight in the pits of the underworld. And he’ll need the help of the last person he can trust––the demon witch Nadya.

There is no way Nadya, who spends her days taking care of others, expected to find Uriel on her doorstep. He seems no happier about being there than she does. But helping him means evening the scales against her backstabbing sister, and she’ll do whatever it takes to make that bitch pay.

Using the fight pit circuits in the demon underworld, Nadya helps Uriel combat his way to the arena at the castle in Russia. Only she isn’t what she seems. As a matter of fact, she may hold the key to his redemption...and to his heart.

Coldest Fire in the third book in the Dominion series by Juliette Cross. This was my favorite book of the series, which is surprising because I didn’t think anyone could top Dom and Anya from the first book. I really loved Uriel and Nadya. They were so perfect for each other.

Uriel spent months as a captive of the Demon Prince Vladek, under the control of his demon witch concubine, Lisabette. He suffered untold tortures at their hands, and he’s determined to get revenge. Someone must rid the world of that evil, and Uriel is just the archangel for the job. Even if it means working with another witch, Nadya. He and Nadya have history, and he both craves and hates her.

Nadya escaped her captivity under Vladek, but she bears the scars still, both physical and emotional. She agrees to help Uriel because she knows someone has to help, but she’s terrified of ending up back in Vladek’s clutches. As she and Uriel spend time together, she finds more of her own inner strength, and comes to realize there’s more the Uriel than she ever imagined.

Nadya and Uriel were both broken and scarred from their experiences, but they were strong enough to come out the other side wanting to do good. I loved that they were wary of each other at the start, but also drawn to one another. The way Uriel took care of Nadya made me melt. Their inner strength really came through, and I loved their romance.

The world-building is well-done. I loved how nothing was really black and white. Some of the most evil demons were true allies, while the most pious angels were betrayers.

This was a great series and I hope we see more in the world going forward.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

Dominion

four-stars


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Review: Lord of Wicked Intentions by Lorraine Heath

Posted May 24, 2021 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Lord of Wicked Intentions by Lorraine HeathReviewer: Holly
Lord of Wicked Intentions by Lorraine Heath
Narrator: Faye Adele
Series: The Lost Lords of Pembrook #3
Also in this series: Lord of Temptation (The Lost Lords of Pembrook, #2)
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: April 28, 2013
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Point-of-View: Alternating Third Person
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 384
Length: 10 hours, 7 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Holly's 2020 Goodreads Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Three young heirs, imprisoned by an unscrupulous uncle, escaped—to the sea, to the streets, to faraway battle—awaiting the day when they would return to reclaim their birthright...

Lord Rafe Easton may be of noble blood, but survival taught him to rely only on himself and to love no one. Yet when he sets eyes on Miss Evelyn Chambers, an earl's illegitimate daughter, he is determined to have her, if only as his mistress...

After her father's death, Evelyn Chambers never imagined she would be sold to the highest bidder, yet circumstances give her little choice but to accept the lord's indecent proposal. Rafe is wealthy, as well as ruthless. Yet his coldness belies deep passion and deeper secrets. If she must be his, Evelyn intends to lay bare everything the Lord of Pembrook is hiding. But dark discoveries threaten to destroy them both until unexpected love leads the last lost lord home...

Lord of Wicked Intentions is the third and final book in Lorraine Heath’s Lost Lords of Pembrook series. I requested the audiobook from the library, but only listened to a few chapters before I switched to reading. I liked the narrator, but I was getting impatient with the pacing. I easily fell into the story once I began reading. I actually liked this book least of the three when I first started, but it ended up my favorite of the series.

My heart broke for poor Evelyn. There were some really hard chapters to read here. Her lack of control over her own future, the way her half-brother treated her, even the way Rafe treated her…man, she had a rough go of it. I liked her innate optimism and how she tried to make the best things. I also ended up really liking Rafe. In the beginning, his constant whining was kind of annoying, but I came to feel for him as things were further revealed about his past struggles.

Their romance was also well done. I enjoyed Evelyn’s journey to independence and how focused she was on herself. She didn’t need Rafe. She wanted him, but that’s not the same thing. It was very refreshing.

Another great series from Heath.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

Lost Lords of Pembrook

four-stars


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Throwback Thursday Review: Rock Addiction by Nalini Singh

Posted May 20, 2021 by Holly in Reviews | 4 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Rock Addiction by Nalini SinghReviewer: Holly
Rock Addiciton by Nalini Singh
Series: Rock Kiss #1
Also in this series: Rock Courtship, Rock Addiction, Rock Courtship, Rock Hard, Rock Hard, Rock Redemption, Rock Redemption, Rock Redemption, Rock Addiction, Rock Courtship, Rock Hard, Rock Wedding, Rock Wedding, Rock Wedding, Rock Addiction (Rock Kiss, #1), Rock Hard (Rock Kiss, #2), Rock Redemption (Rock Kiss, #3), Rock Wedding (Rock Kiss, #4), Rock Addiction
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: September 9th 2014
Pages: 406
Add It: Goodreads
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four-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

A bad boy wrapped in a sexy, muscled, grown-up package might be worth a little risk…

Molly Webster has always followed the rules. After an ugly scandal tore apart her childhood and made her the focus of the media’s harsh spotlight, she vowed to live an ordinary life. No fame. No impropriety. No pain. Then she meets Zachary Fox, a tattooed bad boy rocker with a voice like whiskey and sin, and a touch that could become an addiction.

A one-night stand with the hottest rock star on the planet, that’s all it was meant to be…

Fox promises scorching heat and dangerous pleasure, coaxing Molly to extend their one-night stand into a one-month fling. After that, he’ll be gone forever, his life never again intersecting with her own. Sex and sin and sensual indulgence, all with an expiration date. No ties, no regrets. Too late, Molly realizes it isn’t only her body that’s become addicted to Fox, but her heart…

I just recently re-read this book, and it was just as good this time around. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend the entire series.

This review was originally published on September 8, 2014

A curious thing happened when I read this book. The first time through, I struggled a bit with the pacing and didn’t warm up to Molly until the 2nd half of the book. I loved the second half, but I was lukewarm about the first.  Then I started thinking about a particular scene in the first part of the book and ended up doing a full re-read. I fell in love. I have no idea why, but I really connected with Molly the second time around. Maybe because I knew all her secrets, so her motives made more sense? Or perhaps I just paid more attention to her and not as much to Fox? I’m not sure. What I can say is I devoured it the second time around. And the third. And the fourth. Fox and Molly are both complex, emotionally compelling characters. I adored this book.

Fox sees Molly at a party and decides he wants to take her home. She’s been on his mind all night. He gets his chance when she decides to duck out early, and he takes her home. Once there, he decides one night will never be enough. She sings to him in a way no other woman ever has, and he isn’t ready to give up her song. If only Molly felt the same way.

After an ugly scandal ruined Molly’s childhood and forced her to grow up far too soon, she’s kept her world tightly controlled. Fox threatens to shatter that control with his sexy lip-ring and overwhelming personality, but she has no desire to ever be the in the spotlight again. If only Fox wasn’t so addictive…she might be able to resist.

Fox is everything you’d expect from Nalini Singh. An alpha rock star with a sexy lip ring and whiskey voice. Jealous, possessive, sex on a stick… and surprisingly sweet and tender. I struggled with was why Fox was so fixated on Molly. I wish we’d been given more to explain why he was so attracted to her in the beginning, and why he wanted to own her after their first brief encounter. I get he was attracted to her, but his deeper feelings made little sense. As the story progressed I didn’t doubt his commitment or his feelings, but in the beginning they were hard to swallow.  His quick claim on Molly was surprising, but I can’t deny he worked it well.

“You know when you get the whisper of a melody in your head, or the murmur of a song? And you have the gut feeling that if you could just hear the rest of it, just capture the music”—the need an ache as frustrating as it was piercing —“you’d have something fucking amazing?”

Noah nodded.

“Yeah well, that’s what it feels like with Molly.” The most potent whisper of his life. “I’m not about to walk away from that.”

 

Molly is understandably hesitant to enter into a relationship with Fox. Not only is he a man with a bad reputation, he’s a man who lives his life in the limelight – somewhere Molly never wants to be.

“You’ll go,” she said, gripping the counter behind her and fighting back tears. “After a month, you’ll go. But I’ll still be here, living my life. Being famous, even by association… I can’t handle it, Fox.”

Despite her reservations, Molly is the perfect fit for him. She’s bold, knows her own mind and isn’t afraid to stand up for herself. And if she’s just as possessive and jealous as Fox? Well, let’s just say that led to some of my favorite scenes. Both are a bit damaged, but they complete each other.  I fell in love with them.

The band is a family. I felt like I came to know each member in turn through their interactions with Molly and Fox. That Molly and Fox became home base for the band was lovely. I liked how they accepted Molly and treated her as one of their own. Each time they were on page I felt like I was sitting down with a close-knit family.  They had their share of problems but they worked through things together. Same with Molly’s best friend Charlie, and her sister Thea. I like that she had friendships outside her relationships with Fox.

This is spicier than many of her other books, but that worked so well. The sex scenes were smoking hot. There were quite a few more than I’m used to seeing from Singh, and some of them felt gratuitous. The makeup and angry sex scenes were some of the best, but others didn’t need to be included, in my opinion.

The story is sizzling hot. It has all the elements needed to be a winning romance. Singh really knows how to work the story to captivate her readers. The story is emotional, twisted, sweet and sexy all at once.  I’m only sorry it ended.

4.25 out of 5

This book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

four-half-stars


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Review: Shadow Storm by Christine Feehan

Posted May 17, 2021 by Casee in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Shadow Storm by Christine FeehanReviewer: Casee
Shadow Storm by Christine Feehan
Series: Shadow Riders #6
Also in this series: Shadow Reaper, Shadow Reaper, Shadow Reaper, Shadow Keeper, Shadow Warrior, Shadow Flight
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: May 11, 2021
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 432
Add It: Goodreads
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four-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

A long-simmering feud between two families comes to a head in this gripping novel in Christine Feehan's New York Times bestselling Shadow Riders series. As the youngest member of the Ferraro family, Emmanuelle has watched each of her brothers find happiness in love while her own heart was shattered by a lover's betrayal. For two years she's stayed as far away from Valentino Saldi as possible--until she learns that he's been shot during a hostile takeover of his family's territory.
Emme's first instinct is to call her brother Stefano for help, and soon the entire Ferraro clan arrives to bring Val back from the brink of death and protect the Saldis from further attack. With one choice Emme has re-exposed herself to Val's intoxicating pull and dragged her family into the Saldis' private war.
A deadly storm is brewing, and only time will tell who survives...

Valentino Saldi and Emmanuelle Ferraro should be enemies. The two families have been at war for a hundred years. The Saldis came close to wiping out the entire Ferraro line. Luckily some of the Ferraros were able to escape through the shadows. It took a long time, but the Ferraros have come back stronger than ever. That doesn’t mean that they have forgotten their history. The two families now have an uneasy truce, something that changes when Emmanuelle gets a call that Val has been shot & is possibly dying. Emme does the only thing she can, what she has been doing her entire life; she calls her brother, Stefano.

Emme’s brothers are aware that Emme & Val have a history, they just don’t know the extent of it. Emme first met Val when she was just sixteen. He was much older & tried to stay away from her. Eventually he gave in & the two started an affair. The day Emme decide to give up her family for Val, she finds him in a compromising position with another woman. Always thinking & expecting the worst, Emme is not surprised though she is heartbroken. She loved Val and his betrayal cut her deeply.

Fast forward to the present. Val has given Emme space for two years, but he’s done. He doesn’t know if it’s because he almost lost his life, but he will not live another day without Emmanuelle Ferraro by his side. Though the situation seems insurmountable, Val eventually gets Emme to listen to what she’s known all along; Val didn’t cheat on her nor did he mean what she overheard him saying. All Val knew was that his uncle was up to something & he wasn’t going to have Emme caught in the middle.

Now Val and his uncle are at war over human trafficking. Val tried for years to convince his father that his uncle was bad news. His father wouldn’t believe it. After his uncle attempts to kill him & his father, his father finally starts believing. While Val lays dying, he knows the only thing he can do is call Emme. He also knows when Dario calls her that she would come. He also knows that it’s more than likely that she’ll call Stefano, which is exactly what he hopes for. He can’t fight Miceli on his own, he needs the Ferraros behind him. Although this seems really mercenary, he really does love Emme, which makes it forgivable.

I ate up this book. Emme was annoying at times, with her constant doubt in Val. It got old. Luckily Val called her on it & she’s able to reflect inward and see that she’s pushing Val away because she’s scared. She’s never listened to anyone but her brothers, but Val quickly rises to the most important person in her life. I’ve been waiting for this book for years and it didn’t disappoint. I do think that a few things were resolved too quickly, specifically how their shadows reacted to each other. I’m really looking forward to seeing where this series goes. It seems as though CF is going to branch off into the Ferraro extended family. I can’t wait to get answers on issues that weren’t addressed by the end of the book. Saying that, I enjoyed this book immensely.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5.

Shadow Riders

four-half-stars


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Throwback Thursday Guest Review: Darkfire Kiss by Deborah Cooke

Posted April 29, 2021 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Throwback Thursday Guest Review: Darkfire Kiss by Deborah CookeReviewer: Tracy
Darkfire Kiss by Deborah Cooke
Series: Dragonfire #6
Also in this series: Kiss of Fate
Publisher: Signet Eclipse
Publication Date: April 29, 2011
Format: eBook
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 419
Add It: Goodreads
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four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

For one woman, he will risk more than his life...

Rafferty Powell has exchanged challenge coins with his arch-nemesis Magnus Montmorency, and their next battle will be their last. But Rafferty never expected to meet a woman whose desire for Magnus’ downfall matches his own—and whose presence sparks Rafferty’s long-awaited firestorm.

Since facing her own mortality, investigative reporter Melissa Smith has resolved to live without fear. She’s determined to make the seemingly untouchable Magnus pay for his role in ending her friend’s life – no matter the price to herself.

When her quest entwines with Rafferty’s, Melissa finds herself risking more than she ever thought possible. Because the heat between them unleashes the darkfire—an awesome force of Pyr legend, one that won’t be sated until everything they know has been tested and remade.

This review was originally posted on April 28, 2011.

Rafferty is outside the home of his enemy, Magnus, when he spies a thief. She is trying to get into the house and doing a surprisingly easy job of it. He follows her and ends up saving her from Magnus’s fury. Rafferty eventually tracks the woman down while in his dragon form with the intent of getting information from her. Not only does he not get the info he needs but the woman, an out of work journalist, takes pictures of Rafferty fighting another dragon and posts them on her blog.

Needless to say this is horrifying for the Pyr who pride themselves on secrecy but that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the shit hitting the fan. You see, Rafferty and the woman, Melissa, are mates and during the eclipse their firestorm begins. But their firestorm contains darkfire and because of extenuating circumstances the firestorm cannot be sated. Darkfire means that life is changing for the Pyr and not everyone is happy about it – especially Erik who is the leader of the Pyr. While Erik deals with his thoughts on the discovery of the Pyr and what that will mean for their kind, Rafferty and Melissa work together to find a solution to not only deal with the discovery but how to deal with Magnus as well as the legacy that was left to Rafferty by his grandfather.

This was a really great book in the Dragonfire series. I was very much looking forward to Rafferty’s firestorm after reading the first five books but wasn’t sure what to expect. I loved that Cooke gave us another view into not only the Pyr but to Rafferty himself. With the firestorm not being able to be sated in the usual way – via conception – Rafferty and Melissa worked together to find a solution. Working so closely with each other and not depending strictly on sex to further their relationship really worked for me. I think showing the reader the intellectual side of the couple during the firestorm was a great idea and was done very well.

I’m really looking forward to seeing what happens next with the Pyr. We’ve been set up with some stories and I think they’ll be great. There was also an excerpt in the back of the book for Cooke’s spin off series of the kids of the Pyr that were, in this book, toddlers, that was quite good. I’m not sure how that will work with the kids being teens so my curiosity is definitely piqued.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

Dragonfire

four-stars


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