Tag: Karina Cooper

Guest Review: Blood of the Wicked by Karina Cooper

Posted June 18, 2014 by Whitley B in Reviews | 0 Comments

Publisher: Avon, Harper CollinsGenres: Urban Fantasy

Blood of the WickedWhitley’s review of Blood of the Wicked (Dark Mission #1) by Karina Cooper

When the world went straight to hell, humanity needed a scapegoat to judge, to blame . . . to burn.

As an independent witch living off the grid, Jessie Leigh has spent her life running, trying to blend in among the faceless drudges in the rebuilt city. She thought she was finally safe, but now she’s been found in a New Seattle strip club—by a hard-eyed man on a mission to destroy her kind.

A soldier of the Holy Order, Silas Smith believes in the cause: trawling the fringes of society for the murderous witches who threaten what’s left of the world. Forced into a twisting web of half-truths and lies, he has to stay close to the most sensuous and electrifying woman he has ever seen and manipulate her into leading him to the he witch he has to kill: her brother. Silas doesn’t know that Jessie’s his enemy, only that he wants her, needs her, even as he lies to her… and must protect her until his final breath.

I was attracted to this book because of the setting, and wow this book delivered.  I have an unabashed love for out-in-the-open urban fantasies, and this book mixed it with a kind of dystopia/quasi-apocalypse feel.  Everything was dirty and gritty and dangerous and falling apart, but the book toed the line of making it hard without going so overboard that it went into melodramatic.  I loved a lot of the details in here, and their society makes sense.

Our two main leads were fun, as we got to watch them muddle through attempts at mutual lying and secret-keeping.  Each of them has a hidden agenda, and that made for some good tension in the relationship.  Again, without going completely over-the-top with it, though.  Kudos.  I thought Silas was a bit bland, with really nothing to set him apart from all the other muscle-y, brooding guys in this genre.  On the other hand, if that’s your type, he does fill it out rather nicely.  Jessie had the more interesting conflict, and I did greatly reading the chapters that were focused on her.  The two of them had decent chemistry together, but…the sex scenes really put me off.  Not because they weren’t hot, but rather because they kept bumping uglies at the most inappropriate times possible.  Why have a sex scene in the middle of a murderous chase when five pages later they’re back in a safe house?  Why not just have sex there?  Maybe it’s just me, but that level of self-destructive lust always feels disingenuous.

The plot had a lot of action to keep it moving along, with the romance tucked in here and there but rarely slowing things down.  Although I can’t say I was very invested in the mystery.  The whole thing was so fantastical that there was no way for me to even try to figure it out.  Usually with mysteries the thing keeping me going is seeing if I guessed right, but in this book, that wasn’t an option.  Dead bodies all around?  Well, it was something magic that we haven’t explained yet, so your only option is to wait in the dark.

Overall a good start to what promises to be an interesting series.

Rating: 4 out of 5

This title is available from Avon.  You can purchase it here or here in e-format.

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Mini-Review: Wicked Lies by Karina Cooper

Posted March 3, 2013 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Jonas Stone has been given his first independent operation: rescue the insurrection leader’s imprisoned grandson from the Mission. Getting the job done means more than getting Danny Granger out–it means staying with him while he heals. Staying too close, for way too long. 

Danny is everything Jonas isn’t: confident, optimistic, honest–a man to be reckoned with. If only it didn’t mean going against everything Jonas has planned. He’s kept his secrets for years, hid behind a mask no one could see through…until now. Danny isn’t the kind of man Jonas deserves. But he might be exactly the man he needs…
Jonas is the guy behind the monitor. He helps behind the scenes to get Danny Granger out of his cell and to a safe house but while they’re on a com together they each feel a connection. Jonas is determined to get Danny out but he feels protective and emotional with this man he’s never met before. Danny loves the smooth as silk voice in his ear and wants more of the man behind the voice.
Once Danny is safe and the two men meet it’s everything they can do to stay away from each other. They each have their own reasons but that doesn’t last for long. Unfortunately Jonas’s fears get the better of him and he leaves. Can the two work it out?
This is a very sweet story. At first hard to read because we see one of the heroes getting beaten, but it certainly gets better after that. 
The story is a in between romance as this is story 4.5 in the Dark Missions series. I have to say that I was a bit confused as I hadn’t read any of the other books but that didn’t make me any less emotional about the relationship between the men. It was intense and a bit heartbreaking even though as (pretty much) an outsider I didn’t have the scoop on the stories behind the men. 
The story was a good one and makes me want to get to know more about this world that Ms. Cooper has created.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

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What I Read Last Week

Posted February 25, 2013 by Tracy in Features | 4 Comments

Another Happy Monday to you!

I wish I could say that my life is incredibly exciting and relate all that happened recently to you but yeah, my life isn’t that exciting. It seems like we’ve been homebodies lately and haven’t really done much. I love my home so I love being there so that’s a good thing.

We did see a few movies that were good – Warm Bodies, The Impossible and the Franco Zefirelli version of Romeo and Juliet. My oldest just finished reading Romeo and Juliet in her 9th grade English class (do ALL 9th grade English classes read that? I know mine did) and the teacher had only shown bits and pieces of the movie to the kids. My oldest wanted to see the whole thing and was a blubbering mess by the end. That used to be my favorite movie when I was in high school and watched it about a thousand times (I had a huge crush on Leonard Whiting) so it made me smile to see her enjoy it so much.

We finally got the date for my youngest’s black belt test and it’s March 30th. She’s very excited and has been working hard on her form and techniques. She also has to learn some Korean and learn the Korean national anthem which I think is pretty cool but not all that easy. lol

Ok, on to what I read this week:

I started off the week with Wicked Lies by Karina Cooper. This is an in-between story in the Dark Mission series. I haven’t read any of the other books but this one intrigued me. The story is about tech guy Jonas who helps save Danny after he’s captured and beaten. He manages to get him out of the holding facility and while he’s escaping they talk. The pair become attracted to each other and when they meet they have a hard time keeping their hands off of each other. The story is set in a world that I wasn’t familiar with and frankly while I really liked the story between the two men I think it might have been even better had I read the rest of the series. I’ll post my review for this one next week. 3.5 out of 5   

Next up was Alien Overnight by Robin L. Rotham. My friend gave me a bag of books that she didn’t want any longer. When I pulled this one out I kind of rolled my eyes at the cover but the back blurb made me laugh so I read it. The story is about alien’s who are on earth to try and gather women to take back to their planet to bear their children as their species is dying out. One alien realizes that one of the women is a half human/half Garathan and wants to make her his mate. The story is about Monica’s transformation into this being and her dealings with her two mates, Kellen and Shauss. The story wasn’t as ridiculous as I first believed it would be which was nice and parts of it were enjoyable. I DIDN’T enjoy the forced seductions but of course the heroine ended up LOVING them. Ug. lol 2.5 out of 5  

A Most Scandalous Proposal by Ashlyn Macnamara was my next read. This story was about 2 sisters, their parents (especially their mother) who want them married to titles and the many different men. There’s the man that 1 sister is in love with but he wants to marry the other. There’s the 2nd sisters best friend who wants her, an Earl that gets married to sister 1 through compromise and then there’s the villain in all of that. If you want the full story you can read my review here. 3.5 out of 5 

From Here to Eternity by Paige Cuccaro is a story that kind of has a fantasy/sci-fi/paranormal/futuristic feel to it. I’m obviously not sure how to label it but it was good. Rachel wakes up to find her obituary in the newspaper and a man who calls her his wife but she can’t remember. The story involves automatons and deals with the question of what exactly makes us…us. It was a good one I just wish it had been longer. 3.75 out of 5 (read for The Book Binge) 

Fool’s Gold by Cassandra Dean is a western historical about a couple who have secretly lusted after each other but have a contentious relationship. They get stuck in a blizzard together and truly discover who the other person is – in and out of bed. The story was cute but very short. 3 out of 5 (read for The Book Binge) 

Wild Invitation by Nalini Singh is an anthology that has 4 stories and includes 2 stories that were previously printed in anthologies and 2 brand new stories. The 2 stories that I had previously read were wonderful, as they were the first time I read them (Beat of Temptation with Nate & Tamsyn and Stroke of Enticement with Annie and Zach) and I loved revisiting them. The two new stories, Declaration of Courtship & Texture of Intimacy, were really good as well and definitely worth reading. 4.5 out of 5 (read for The Book Binge) 

Seeing is Believing by Erin McCarthy is the 3rd book in the Ohio’s Most Haunted Town series. It’s been 6 years since the last full novel but it was great to be back in Cuttersville. This story is about Piper who in the previous book was only 8 years old. Now she’s grown and is teaching kindergarten. She’s still seeing ghosts and trying to ignore that fact. When her childhood fantasy comes back to Cuttersville in the form of Brady Stritmeyer Piper goes for the gold. They start an affair but soon things get series and neither is sure what to do. I really liked this book. I loved Piper and Brady together and loved seeing the characters from previous books. 4.25 out of 5 (read for The Book Binge) 

Last for the week was Spider Sense by Charlie Richards. This was a really good story about Haben who is a tarantula shifter who finds his mate while helping out a friend. Lou is the parent of his dead partners son and the son has shifted into a lion. Haben is asked by a friend to go and help them all understand what’s going on but finds that Lou is his mate. Lou is freaked when he sees Haben in spider form and almost blows it. Then when Lou’s son gets kidnapped they need to find and save him. It was the best story I’ve read in this story so far and hopefully the next few in the series will be just as good. 4 out of 5 

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week: 
A Rainbow for Christmas by Mary Montague Sikes 
The Devil’s Triangle by Toni de Palma 
Immortal Ever After by Lynsay Sands

Happy Reading!

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