Tag: Andrea Speed

Review: Josh of the Damned Triple Feature #2: The Final Checkout by Andrea Speed

Posted April 28, 2013 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Josh Caplan thought he’d solved his home office problem and stopped the Quik-Mart Corporation from expanding into hell, but it turns out a guardian’s work is never done. Medusa has plans for him, and she’s not the only one.

What’s a poor night clerk to do when he’s besieged on all sides by deluded vampire slayers, angry zombies, crazy gods, and the most terrifying enemy of all: a dickish CEO?

To survive this, Josh will have to do more than just rely on his necromancer boss, his hot vampire boyfriend, and his yeti stalker. This time, he’ll have to find his own inner hero to save the day.

Josh is visited by his undead boyfriend, Colin, and gifted with a bracelet/wrist band thingy from Medusa. Basically it’s a protection for him against those who will do him harm, but he doesn’t know that at first. When Josh is at work with his boss, who is a really weak necromancer, and they are attacked by first a vampire slayer and then a hoard of zombies Josh thinks it’s the end for him. He finds out that the bracelet that Medusa gave him can work some pretty great magic.

After that Colin ends up taking Josh down to Dev, or hell if you will, to look in on the company that’s making all of the crazy monsters that keep attacking him (see Josh of the Damned Triple Feature #1 for more details). It turns out that the crazy people making the crazy monsters are Medusa’s sisters who are pretty powerful but apparently whack in the head. They attack both Josh and Colin but Josh manages to work his bracelet/Medusa magic and temporarily thwart the bad guys – or in this case girls.

When Josh and Colin think they’ll be spending a quiet weekend at Josh’s place Josh wakes up after the first night to find his roommate home. When Josh gets a call from work that the big Quik-Mart boss is there and wants to see him Josh heads on over. Mr Quik-Mart is a nutjob and Josh manages to take charge of the situation. In return Medusa gifts him with a new apartment in a location where Josh thought he would never live.

All three stories in this triple feature were good. I liked seeing Josh being his kind of hot oafish self and bringing his own crazy thoughts and to the page. I enjoyed seeing Colin again but there was no hot m/m lovin in this one and that was a bit disappointing.

I can’t quite figure out exactly what Medusa’s game is in this one. It shows us that Josh is basically Medusa’s puppet but what exactly she had planned for him I just don’t know. I actually like that I don’t know as it adds a bit more mystery to it all. I know this one’s titled The Final Checkout but I hope that’s not all we get from Josh of the Damned in the future.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Andrea Speed

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What I Read Last Week

Posted April 1, 2013 by Tracy in Features | 3 Comments


The fact that I’m typing this is proof that I survived last week. It was close but I did it. I did wake up with a sore throat and slight cold yesterday so my body is trying to fight back for running it ragged. Oh well, at least I’m still up and kicking which is always a good thing in my book. 🙂

My youngest daughter loved all of your kind words about her black belt. She has decided, after a bit of thought, that she will be continuing on. We’re gonna play it by ear to see if she’ll actually stay until she gets her second dan (2nd degree black belt). Right now she’s going for another year and we’ll go from there. I’m actually happy she’s continuing because I think it does her good both mentally and physically and teaches her a lot about discipline that she then applies to her every day life. 

Here are a couple of pictures of my girls in their Easter dresses that my sister sent them:

I do have to apologize for ignoring the blog last week and I haven’t been blog hopping in so damn long either I’m not sure I remember how! lol I’ll try to do better this week and in the future.

On to what I read last week:

First on my list for the week was Ride With Me by Ruthie Knox. This was a great story about a man and a woman biking across America and eventually falling in love. You can read more about the story and my review here. 4 out of 5 

Next was a novella called The Quizzing Glass Bride by Hayley Ann Solomon. This was the story of a woman who is pledged to marry a man she’s only met a couple of times. It contains a serious case of mistaken identity and…well, you’ll just have to read my review later this week. 🙂

Cutest Couple by Kate Davies was my next read. This novella is about Marc and Bree who haven’t seen each other in 10 years but were once voted Cutest Couple. That was long ago and now they have a lot to talk about after not speaking for so long, including talking about the son that Marc didn’t know he had. I’ll post my review later this month. 3.5 out of 5 

Josh of the Damned Triple Feature #2: The Final Checkout by Andrea Speed continues the story of Josh Caplan and his crazy life working at the Quik-Mart. In this novella he gets to fight all sorts of interesting beings that all hate him for one reason or another. I’ll post my review for this one later this month as well. 3.5 out of 5

Last for the week was The Devil’s Heart by Cathy Maxwell that wraps up The Chattan Curse series. I didn’t actually read the first few books in the series but this one was a decent stand alone. It told the story of Lady Margaret Chattan who is determined to stop the curse that is killing her brothers by heading to Scotland and dealing with the Macnachtan family herself. She doesn’t plan on falling for the Macnachtan Laird, however, and that puts a whole new twist on the curse. It was a decent book that was a bit heavy on the paranormal for my liking (I’m not a HUGE fan of historical paranormal stories) but it was a good book. 3.5 out of 5

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Fool’s Gold by Cassandra Dean

Happy Reading! 

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What I Read Last Week

Posted April 16, 2012 by Tracy in Features | 5 Comments

Nothing to report this week. Just a pretty quiet week and I LOVE that. I do have to register my oldest daughter for HIGH SCHOOL this week. That’s kind of freaking me out, I must admit. When did that happen? How could she have gotten older and I stayed the same age? How? How? How? lol
I read a lot this past week so let’s get to it:

First up was Taming An Impossible Rogue by Suzanne Enoch. This was the story of Camille Pryce – an Ear’s daughter – who ran out on her own wedding a year ago and was then disowned and shunned by her family and friends. She actually became a maid in her aunts home until she found out about the Tantalus Club and the fact that it was hiring women. She got the job and is now hostess in one of their dining rooms. The man she was to marry is still technically engaged to her but he has been banned from the Club and since Camille never leaves it makes it difficult to talk to her. Lord Fenton employs his scandalous cousin, Keating Blackwood, to get into the club and makes a deal to pay him 10,000 pounds when he gets Camille to the altar to marry Fenton. But Camille and Keating fall in love and where does that leave them and Fenton. I really liked this book. I’m becoming a fan of Enoch’s and really like what she does with a romance. 4.25 out of 5

Wolf Tracks by Vivian Arend is the story of Pam who comes to the Granite Lake pack to be the maid of honor at her best friends’ wedding. Pam has no idea that she is among wolf shifters. TJ – the best man – discovers that Pam, who is VERY human, is his mate. After the wedding Pam goes on a hiking excursion and TJ basically kidnaps her. She discovers his wolf secret and TJ spends the week they are together trying to make Pam believe that they are meant to be together. This was another great addition to the Granite Lake Wolves series. I loved TJ and his tenaciousness and I loved that Pam didn’t just accept TJ without some damned good proof. A fun read. 4 out of 5

Sierra Falls by Veronica Wolff is a book that I read for The Book Binge. This is the first in a series about the citizen’s of Sierra Falls, California. In this story we have the daughter to the tavern/lodge owner and the new sheriff in town. Sorrow is trying to help her parents when a whole lot of things are going wrong at the tavern, along with dealing with her current boyfriend, and Billy thinks that the “accidents” at the tavern aren’t accidents at all. Along with that Billy is trying to get over the death of his wife and move on. While this was a good book there was really just too much going on for me. There were many side stories branching off from Sorrow and Billy’s relationship as well as other relationships between Sorrow and her family and some townspeople. Cute, but not wonderful. 3.25 out of 5

Pretty Monsters by Andrea Speed was next. This is a free short and the first story in the Josh of the Damned series. It’s about Josh who works the night shift at the Quik Mart and there’s a hell portal right out back. Josh’s customers range from vampires to zombies and there’s never a dull moment. In this story he meets the hottie, Colin the vampire, and becomes quite friendly with him. This was a fun story and a good introduction to Josh and his world. 3 out of 5

Peek-A-Boo by Andrea Speed is the second free short story in the Josh of the Damned series. This one involved a Yeti who is visiting Josh and slapping dead animals on his counter. Colin comes in and lets him know that the Yeti might have more on his mind with Josh than he originally thought. Again, fun story and funny! I definitely was laughing out loud more than once during this one. Don’t let the monsterish covers freak you out. These are definitely comedic reads. 3.5 out of 5

The Wolf Who Loved Me by Lydia Dare is book 5 in the Westfield Wolves series. This story was about Weston Hadly, a nothing and nobody in the ton, who is caught by Lady Madeline, a Duke’s daughter who has a huge dowry, changing into his wolf form. He manages to corral her and then they’re off to Gretna Green to get married as a mate won’t tell the shifter’s secret. They are soon chased by Madeline’s father but during the trip Madeline manages to fall in love with Weston. I read this one for the Book Binge – you can read my review here. 3.5 out of 5

Josh of the Damned Triple Feature by Andrea Speed was next. This contains 3 short stories that are just great. This one contains a huge man eating mustache, a hentai monster and then Josh has to visit Colin’s boss who is the monster that all monsters are afraid of. Wow. It was really good and I can’t wait to read what happens next. You can read my review here. 4.25 out of 5

Next up was Bride by Mistake by Anne Gracie. This is the conclusion to the Devil Riders series. I didn’t read all the books in the series but I really didn’t need to as this one is good all on it’s own. The story is about Luke who was in Spain during the war and came across a young girl being beaten and raped. He saves her and in order to save her from having to marry her nasty cousin Luke marries the 13 year old – with the thought that the marriage can later be annulled. He drops her off to her aunt in a convent and goes about his life. Eight years later he finds out that the marriage can’t be annulled. He heads to Spain to collect his bride but she is nothing that he expected – she’s better. Bella takes him on a merry ride through Spain and they actually get to know each other. Bella falls completely in love and Luke does as well – while ridding himself of the nightmares that have plagued him since the war. This was a good story. I really liked both Luke and Bella and the whole premise of the story. I thought Spain was a great location for the book. Some parts didn’t work for me as well as others but overall I liked it. 3.5 out of 5

Midnight Rescue by Elle Kennedy was my next read. This is the story of an assassin, Abby, whose cover has been blown. Her boss asks a mercenary group to go in and get her. Her choice to drop her cover was to try to get closer to the young girls that were being kidnapped and held for auction. When she’s rescued she convinces the mercs to go in and save the girls. The story focuses on the mercs getting ready for the mission but also the budding relationship between Abby and one of the mercs, Kane. The story premise was good but a lot of the book didn’t work all that well for me for different reasons. I read this one for The Book Binge so I’ll let you know when my review posts. 3 out of 5

Next was another book for The Book Binge (yes, I’m trying to catch myself up!) called All For You by Lynn Kurland. This was the story of Peaches Alexander who wants the whole fairy tale relationship thing. Nothing else is going right in her life so when she’s invited to a ball at a Duke’s house she’s sure that he’s interested. Also at the ball is Stephen de Piaget who is thoroughly in love with Peaches but gets tongue tied and blows it every time he’s near her. Peaches doesn’t care for Stephen at all but when she walks through a time gate and ends up in medieval England Stephen’s the one that can save her. This was a very sweet and good story. Stephen is lovely and he’s so good to Peaches. (I honestly had a problem with her name though – I know it was her hippi parents but yuck. lol) I liked the story, the romance, the time travel and almost everything else. It just worked. 3.75 out of 5

Wanting by Piper Vaughn is a short free read and one I read about at Tam’s…then realized that I already own it and must have had it for a while – oops. lol Anyway, the story is about 18 year old Jonah who’s got it bad for his older brother’s best friend, Laurie. Jonah asks Laurie to take his virginity. He does and the pair end up in a relationship. It I really liked all the characters in this one. I would have loved this as a full sized book but it really worked as a short and was great. 4 out of 5 Written for the Goodreads M/M Romance Group’s “Hot Summer Days” anthology.

Last for the week was Joy & Pain by Celia Kyle. This was another free short that had an ex ballet dancer working at a strip joint. Tevin has a certain “kink” that hasn’t been fulfilled in a while. His boss introduces him to one of his friends, Zeke, who is more than willing to fill the kink for Tevin. This was good but pretty short. I really couldn’t connect with the characters as it was told from Tevin’s pov but it was definitely on the spicy side. 3 out of 5

Free novelette written for the Goodreads M/M Romance group’s “Hot Summer Days” event.

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:

Happy Reading!

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Review: Josh of the Damned Triple Feature by Andrea Speed

Posted April 13, 2012 by Tracy in Reviews | 5 Comments

What most people call a hellish shift, Josh Caplan calls a normal evening. After all, he works nights at a convenience store beside the mouth of hell, selling snacks to zombies and lizard men.

Some monsters are odder—and more dangerous—than most. Like the rampaging, oversized mustache who skips the Pringles and eats the customers instead. Or Cthulhu’s half-brother Stan, who doesn’t know how to take no for an answer . . . or where to put all those tentacles.

But killer facial hair and inept hentai beasts pale in comparison to the monster even other monsters fear. When hell’s big boss demands a sit-down with Josh, she reveals a destiny bigger than he’d ever imagined—or wanted. You’d think preventing the apocalypse would net Josh more than minimum wage and a hot vampire boyfriend, but it turns out saving the world can be a pretty thankless job.
In book 1 of the Josh of the Damned series, Pretty Monsters, we meet Josh Caplan. He works the night shift at the Quik Mart and since there’s a portal to hell right behind the Mart he gets a ton of strange customers. One of those customers is Colin – a vampire – and they become an item.
Night of the Mustache
As our Triple Feature begins Josh and Colin are on the roof of the Quik Mart having a little tete a tete and Josh is getting bitten for the first time. It renders him a bit bleary eyed, weak knee’d and his memory’s got a bit of a hole in it. On the whole though Josh pretty much thinks that being bit by Colin is the best thing since sliced bread. Josh is almost back to normal when they hear a strange noise. As they watch a huge…mustache…comes out of the sky and lands in the parking lot of the Quik Mart. It a bit freaky and even Colin has never seen anything like it. When it starts eating the bikers in the lot and then gets Colin, Josh is more than anxious to figure out how to get rid of the oversized facial hair.
This was definitely my favorite of the three stories. It was so bizarre and unreal that it made me laugh and of course Josh’s thoughts had me cracking up. Here’s an example:
Man! When he’d taken this job, he thought he’d most likely die at the hands of a robber. If he had known “ingested by ’stache” was a possibility, he’d have never signed on. Not without a raise and the promise of an on-site electric razor.
Needless to say it all ends well and Josh still continues to work at the Quik Mart – despite its strange occurrences.
I Was Cthulhu’s Love Slave
It’s Christmas night and Josh is at the Mart again. Yes, his boss told him that he could take the night off but with no family around and his roommate gone he figured why not go to work and be entertained by the monsters – and get time and a half.
His most interesting and annoying customer of the night comes in wearing a large black hat and trench coat. When he finally gets a good look at the guy he finds himself faced with green skin and many, many, many tentacles. The guy claim’s he’s Cthulhu and then starts to make his move on Josh. Luckily Colin walks in to try and save the day and then an even better helper arrives in the form of the Yeti that has been courting Josh (see book 2). Together the Yeti (that Josh has named Professor Bobo) and Colin take care of the hentai monster and save the day.
This was a pretty funny story. Stan Cthulhu was a complete overachiever and I loved that Colin and Bobo took care of him quickly. Josh has such a quick wit and comes up with fabulous quips on a regular basis.
Interview with the Empire
The night after Christmas Colin comes to see Josh. One of the things that’s been bothering Josh is that he can not only see these monsters but he remembers them as well. Most other humans see them but then quickly forget them and move on. When Colin says that his boss wants to see Josh he is none too thrilled but hopes that maybe he can figure out who and what he is. Josh heads off to Dev (what Josh thinks of as hell) to meet the big boss who was described to him as the monster that other monsters are afraid of. Yeah, no fear there, right? When Josh meets the boss she figures out what he is and sends him on a mission. Now we don’t actually get to see a conclusion to the mission but it’s a doozie and should keep Josh busy for a while. Josh also finds out some disturbing info about Colin that pisses Josh right off and they’ll have a time getting it back together.
The final story in the triple feature was a good one. We got to see where Colin came from and learn some interesting tidbits from his boss. I think what I liked about this story so much is though it’s “a day in the life” type story which is what we’ve got of Josh so far, it also gave Josh a mission that will continue, I assume, into the next book. The mission is definitely life or death so it will be interesting to see how Josh handles it all – as well as Colin.
Overall the triple feature was great and definitely a great continuation of Josh’s trials and tribulations at the Quik Mart. I would definitely recommend reading books 1 and 2 (which are 15 and 12 pages respectively) and can be read for free right now at Goodreads – go here and here. While definitely not romances all of the books there was enough of a relationship between Josh and Colin to soothe my romantic heart. Get ready to laugh – cuz they’re pretty darned funny.
Rating: 4.25 out of 5

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