Tag: Piatkus

Review: Death Knell by Hailey Edwards

Posted November 8, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Death Knell by Hailey EdwardsReviewer: Holly
Death Knell by Hailey Edwards
Narrator: Laurence Bouvard
Series: Foundling #3
Also in this series: Bayou Born
Publisher: Piatkus
Publication Date: December 4, 2018
Format: Audiobook, eBook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »

Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 320
Length: 10 hours and 41 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: GoodReads Challenge, Holly's 2019 GoodReads Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

War burned her. Famine nearly killed her. Now Death is at her heels.

After her two worlds clashed apocalyptically, Luce Boudreau needed some time out. But Destiny had other ideas. When bodies begin washing ashore down the Mississippi River, Luce discovers they are part of a gruesome, lethal message. Her final sister, Death, is trying to break through.

Every sign is clear: the end is coming, but earth will be destroyed - quite literally - over Luce's dead body, even if that means she'll be battling her own nature. And her coterie will stand with her, though Cole keeps standing one step too goddamn far away. Her mysterious new partner, Adam Wu, on the other hand, seems determined to keep her close at all times. And the more Luce learns about the new world she's part of, the deeper the secrets go. Who - if anyone - can she really trust?

As the final pieces of an ancient war come together, Luce's chance to fight back comes sooner than she expected. Death can come at her . . . she's eager to return the favour.

Death Knell is the third book in the Foundling series by Hailey EdwardsIt’s difficult to review this series without spoilers, but I hate to include them because much of what happens is a surprise. I’m going to try to avoid them completely, which means a shorter review. I expected a sort of light paranormal, filled with voodoo and witchcraft, but this series is filled with so much more than that. For the first time in a very long time, I haven’t been able to figure out where things are heading.

Luce Boudreau has come a long way in a very short time. From a small child found wandering the bayou to a woman with strong family ties and a deep sense of right and wrong, to someone she barely recognizes. She’s determined to overcome the revelations of her past and rise above her previous actions, but holding onto herself is difficult as she gains more power and more of her memories. Cole, the chief of White Horse Security, and his team have become strong allies and anchor her to the here and now, but every step she takes seems to lead to a cold, dark place within her.

The world is very interesting and I love how things are progressing with Luce as her past is slowly revealed and she learns more about herself, her coterie and her family. I am struggling quite a bit with how slowly information is parsed out. Luce isn’t in a big hurry to learn everything there is to know about herself and her past, but I am. I decided to take a break after this book and wait until book 5 is available before continuing, because the slow drip of info is driving me mad.

Still, it’s a lovely series and I like how things are shaping up. There are unexpected twists and turns, a whole cast of intriguing characters and enough emotion and depth to keep me glued to the pages, despite some annoyances. If you’re looking for something fresh, this is the series for you.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Foundling

four-stars


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Review: Bone Driven by Hailey Edwards

Posted November 7, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Bone Driven by Hailey EdwardsReviewer: Holly
Bone Driven by Hailey Edwards
Narrator: Laurence Bouvard
Series: Foundling #2
Also in this series: Bayou Born , Death Knell
Publisher: Piatkus
Publication Date: May 31, 2018
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »

Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 352
Length: 11 hours and 15 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: GoodReads Challenge, Holly's 2019 GoodReads Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
three-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

The bayou is burning, the battle is just beginning - and Luce Boudreau is smack in the middle of no-man's land . . .

Life as a cop in Canton Town, Mississippi, is never dull - particularly when hiding deep within you is a demon bent on the apocalypse. Luce is doing her best to pretend her two worlds aren't crashing into each other, but what should be a routine arson investigation takes a shocking turn when Luce discovers a link between the suspects and her own dark secrets. There's no turning back, even though her search for the truth threatens to burn her old life down around her.

Lines are being drawn in a war Luce barely understands, and she just might be on the wrong side of them. Now she must embrace her powerful destiny, or the ones she loves most will pay the ultimate price.

Bone Driven is the second book in the Foundling series by Hailey Edwards. I started it as soon as I finished the first because I wasn’t ready to let the story go, and because there were a lot of unanswered questions left at the end of Bayou Born. It picks up just where Bayou Born left off. I believe these need to be read in order.

Luce was found in the bayou as a child with strange markings on her arms and no memory of her past. She’s just discovered who she is and where she comes from, and who the men of White Horse Security are to her. Trying to deal with all the changes in her life and adjust to the reality of her past is very difficult, but she’s determined to hold on to her current self, and not let her inner demon take over.

I really enjoy Edwards’ writing style, and I like the way the story is shaping up. Luce is an interesting character and I really like her interactions with those she cares about. I can’t imagine dealing with the guilt and trauma her past brings, and I think in this regard Luce handles things extremely well. Luce’s relationship with Cole, the head of White Horse Security, and the other members of his team, is really intriguing. I love how things are shaping up and how we’re learning more about her – and them – as things progress. I can’t say a lot without including a lot of spoilers, but suffice it to say, I was anxious to see where things would go.

I did get frustrated with Luce as the story wore on, however, because she ignored so many things. She had a head in the sand mentality that really grated on me after awhile. Plus, these books are lengthy and move pretty slow in between all the action.

This moved slower than the first book, but I’m told it picks up steam in books 3 and 4, so I’m going to immediately start the next book, Death Knell. While parts of it frustrated me, I can’t deny I’m hooked on what’s going to happen next.

Rating: 3.75 out of 5

Foundling

three-half-stars


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Review: Bayou Born by Hailey Edwards

Posted November 1, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Bayou Born by Hailey EdwardsReviewer: Holly
Bayou Born by Hailey Edwards
Narrator: Laurence Bouvard
Series: Foundling #1
Also in this series: Death Knell
Publisher: Piatkus
Publication Date: October 17, 2017
Format: eBook, Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »

Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 329
Length: 11 hours and 15 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: GoodReads Challenge, Holly's 2019 GoodReads Challenge, Holly's 2019 New to Me Challenge, New to Me Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Her beginning may be our end...

Deep in the humid swamps of the Mississippi bayou, a mysterious, half-wild child is dragged just in time from the murky waters. She has no memories, no family and is covered in strange markings, the meaning of which no one is able to decipher. Adopted by the policeman who rescued her, Luce Boudrou follows him into the force, determined to prove herself in the eyes of those who are still suspicious.

However, there's more of a battle ahead than Luce could possibly imagine. She may be an orphan without a past, but no one - including Luce herself - could ever be prepared for the truth of her dark, powerful destiny...

Brand new urban fantasy series by Hailey Edwards, bestselling author of the Gemini and Black Dog series. Perfect for fans of Jennifer Estep, Darynda Jones and Ilona Andrews.

Bayou Born is the first book in the Foundling series by Hailey Edwards. I learned about it on Twitter and decided to give it a try after being told “It has demons and dragons..oh my”. I alternated between listening to and reading this book. The narrator wasn’t bad, but some of the voices she used for the characters weren’t good. It started off slow and didn’t really pick up until around the 1/4-1/2 mark. After that I was glued to the pages.

Luce Boudrou was found in the swamp 15 years ago. Feral, with strange markings on her arms, Luce was – and remains – an oddity. She was adopted by the cop who found her, and she has since followed in his footsteps. When she and her partner are called out on a missing persons case and they find another woman who has the same markings as Luce, she hopes this means she’ll finally get answers about who she is and where she came from.

When White Horse security turns up and claims to have a contract to protect the Jane Doe, Luce ends up working pretty closely with the whole team, but most especially their growly leader, Cole. As the case heats up and her own best friend goes missing, Luce wonders if getting the answers she so desperately craves is going to satisfy her…or blow her world wide open.

This started out slow for me. There’s a lot going on to start and the world felt a little bogged down. Once I settled into the story, however, it didn’t take long before I was totally engrossed. The mystery of Luce’s background and her strange markings, along with the suspense of who the Jane Doe was, plus the other disappearances in town, really kept me on the edge of my seat. I can’t say a lot without spoiling things completely, but the various twists and turns made for a compelling read.

Luce is a smartass, and that comes across well on page. I liked her no-nonsense approach to things, and how well she dealt with remaining an outsider and an oddity in town. There were moments of true vulnerability that really got me. There were times I thought Luce acted the fool, and other things that didn’t make a lot of sense in context. Some of the inconsistencies in her character really drove me crazy, but not so much it hurt my enjoyment in the story.

There’s just a hint of romance in this book. If they’ll be able to overcome their past to move forward is still to be determined, and we didn’t get a lot of answers about who and what they are to each other here. I’m really looking forward to the 2nd book. In fact, I immediately started it after finishing this one.

Although this isn’t a perfect book, the twists and turns kept me on the edge of my seat. I can’t wait to see where Edwards takes us next.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Foundling

four-stars


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Review: Fight or Flight by Samantha Young

Posted October 15, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 5 Comments

Review: Fight or Flight by Samantha YoungReviewer: Rowena
Fight or Flight by Samantha Young
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: October 9, 2018
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: First

Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 288
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-stars

A series of chance encounters leads to a sizzling new romance from the New York Times bestselling author of the On Dublin Street series.

The universe is conspiring against Ava Breevort. As if flying back to Phoenix to bury a childhood friend wasn't hell enough, a cloud of volcanic ash traveling from overseas delayed her flight back home to Boston. Her last ditch attempt to salvage the trip was thwarted by an arrogant Scotsman, Caleb Scott, who steals a first class seat out from under her. Then over the course of their journey home, their antagonism somehow lands them in bed for the steamiest layover Ava's ever had. And that's all it was--until Caleb shows up on her doorstep.

When pure chance pulls Ava back into Caleb's orbit, he proposes they enjoy their physical connection while he's stranded in Boston. Ava agrees, knowing her heart's in no danger since a) she barely likes Caleb and b) his existence in her life is temporary. Not long thereafter Ava realizes she's made a terrible error because as it turns out Caleb Scott isn't quite so unlikeable after all. When his stay in Boston becomes permanent, Ava must decide whether to fight her feelings for him or give into them. But even if she does decide to risk her heart on Caleb, there is no guarantee her stubborn Scot will want to risk his heart on her....

Fight or Flight is a standalone contemporary romance by Samantha Young that had me thinking I would DNF it right at the very beginning but I am so glad that I didn’t. The story starts off with the hero and heroine meeting at the airport. They both want to upgrade their seats on their flight and the hero does not make a good first impression on the heroine, nor did he leave a good impression on me. I honestly wanted to punch him in his junk and make sure he hurt before I moved on. But Ava can’t shake the asshole that almost ran her over to get to the counter because, after that, she sees him in line for coffee, he shows up to “save her” at dinner, the spend a very intense night together and to top off her already shitty week, she’s stuck sitting next to him on the flight home.

Ava wants to get home too much to put much effort into her seat partner but for some reason, he brings out the worst in her and they clash at every turn. When she gets home and she continues to run into her seat partner around town, they figure they’re not done with each other.

Our hero, Caleb Scott is from Scotland but is in Boston on business. While he’s in town, he’s interested in keeping the naked party going with Ava and our heroine Ava figures, why not? They continue on as they’ve been going for the past few weeks with the knowledge that as soon as Caleb’s business in Boston is at an end, so is whatever is happening between them. They’re both going through some serious issues, both avoiding rather than dealing and seeing them both come to terms with those issues and fix them made reading this book just that much more enjoyable.

Caleb struggled with his ex-girlfriend, and because of that, he struggles with commitment and relationships. Ava’s issues were more outward then internal as her struggles came about from outside sources and seeing her really come into her own, really own her future while letting go of the past brought me such joy.

Caleb and Ava together were such a great source of entertainment. Their bickering and their chemistry leaped right off the pages and I thought Samantha Young crafted a delightful romance between two people who were right for each other and came to love each other in a very organic and believable way. After that shaky start with Caleb, I came to love him so much over the course of the book.

I also really enjoyed the friendship between Ava and Harper. It made me appreciate my friendships and how I have the same support system that they have with each other and that made me happy. This was a fabulous stand-alone romance that did its job. It made me laugh, it made me sigh and it also made me hopeful for the human race after certain current events. I definitely recommend this one if you’re in the mood for a hate to love romance with a super sexy hero and a heroine that will have you cheering for her to come out on top. So good.

4 out of 5

four-stars


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Sunday Spotlight: Fight or Flight by Samantha Young

Posted October 14, 2018 by Rowena in Features, Giveaways | 1 Comment

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight

I fell in love with Samantha Young’s contemporary romances when I first read On Dublin Street and I haven’t looked back since. With every contemporary romance that she releases, it automatically goes on my must have list and it wasn’t any different with Fight or Flight. That’s why we’re featuring Fight or Flight today for Sunday Spotlight. Enjoy the excerpt!

Sunday Spotlight: Fight or Flight by Samantha YoungFight or Flight by Samantha Young
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: October 9, 2018
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Point-of-View: Alternating Third

Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 288
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books

A series of chance encounters leads to a sizzling new romance from the New York Times bestselling author of the On Dublin Street series.

The universe is conspiring against Ava Breevort. As if flying back to Phoenix to bury a childhood friend wasn't hell enough, a cloud of volcanic ash traveling from overseas delayed her flight back home to Boston. Her last ditch attempt to salvage the trip was thwarted by an arrogant Scotsman, Caleb Scott, who steals a first class seat out from under her. Then over the course of their journey home, their antagonism somehow lands them in bed for the steamiest layover Ava's ever had. And that's all it was--until Caleb shows up on her doorstep.

When pure chance pulls Ava back into Caleb's orbit, he proposes they enjoy their physical connection while he's stranded in Boston. Ava agrees, knowing her heart's in no danger since a) she barely likes Caleb and b) his existence in her life is temporary. Not long thereafter Ava realizes she's made a terrible error because as it turns out Caleb Scott isn't quite so unlikeable after all. When his stay in Boston becomes permanent, Ava must decide whether to fight her feelings for him or give into them. But even if she does decide to risk her heart on Caleb, there is no guarantee her stubborn Scot will want to risk his heart on her....

Order the Book:

AMAZON || BARNES AND NOBLE || KOBO

Excerpt

“Take that,” he grunted out and I turned my head to see he was holding his empty tray out to the flight attendant. The flight attendant stared at it, momentarily stunned.

“Of course, sir,” he said calmly, practiced, before taking it and walking away.

Irate at his behavior, I couldn’t help myself. “Do you ever say please or thank you?”

He cut me a dark look. “What?”

I gestured with my plastic fork to where the flight attendant had been standing. “People aren’t your servants. The flight attendants are not your servants. They’re doing a job and trying to make this flight easier on you. You can be forgiven for being abrupt and standoffish and maybe unintentionally insulting because you’re anxious about flying. I was trying to tell myself that anyway. But the way you speak to people in customer service makes you an arrogant, entitled prick.”

“If I were you I’d shut up and mind your own business.”

“Yeah, well if I were you I’d reach into that goddamn dark soul of yours and pull a thank you out of there every now and then.”

I didn’t know if it was the honest pique trembling in my words, but the Scot’s eyes widened marginally before he glowered and pulled his laptop back out with a clatter on top of his table.

Hateful, hateful man.

Ignoring him now came much, much easier. In fact, after lunch (and another coffee) I actually got into my book. The urge to use the bathroom about fifty minutes from our estimated arrival, however, made continuing to ignore my neighbor impossible. I was going to have to ask him to move. Plus, I was too warm and dying to take off my jacket.

“Could you please let me out?” I asked in a carefully neutral tone.

Equally lacking in expression, he grabbed up his laptop, pushed his table back in and gestured for me to get out.

I stared at the barely-there gap between his knees and the seat in front of him. Was he kidding? He wasn’t going to get out of his seat? My gaze flew to his face but he was staring determinedly ahead.

Fine!

If I happened to step on his feet and then grind my stiletto into his toes that was his fault. Huffing, I got up, grabbed hold of the top of the seat in front of him, trying not to touch the head of the woman sitting in it and I shoved my right leg into the teeny gap he’d left. If he was an average-sized man I probably would have squeezed past no problem in the spacious first class seats.

But he wasn’t an average-sized man.

My leg touched his and my fingernails dug into the headrest in front of me. I shimmied into his space, bringing my left leg into the mix and I heard him curse when my heel came down on his left foot. A fizzle of satisfaction moved through me and I pushed further into his space. I felt his legs tense and I was suddenly very aware that my ass was in his face. Thankfully, it was mostly hidden by the peplum of my jacket.

With one last shimmy I stumbled out into the aisle and looked back at him, hoping he was seared and scorched by the heat of my glower.

The bastard already had his laptop back out.

Wondering how it was possible a person as ill-mannered as him hadn’t been caught by karma by now, I marched down the short aisle and into the toilet at the entrance of the galley.

Inside I did my business, washed up, and yanked out of my jacket feeling unbearably hot. Thankfully, the silk camisole I wore was cut low enough under my arms that there were no damp patches on the material. I patted under my arms and sniffed to make sure I didn’t smell. Though I didn’t, I’d need to freshen up soon in order to avoid it. Not that I cared if I smelled while sitting next to that asshole. I’d do anything to make the rest of his flight uncomfortable.

Knowing I couldn’t stay in the restroom any longer, I slipped out, nearly bumping into the woman who had been sitting in the seat in front of the Scot.

“Sorry,” I smiled apologetically. “Have you been waiting long?”

She shook her head, her expression filled with a sympathy that didn’t make sense until she said, “It’s okay. If I were sitting next to that jerk-off I’d want to stay in there forever, too.”

Of course the people around us had heard our conversation. Weirdly, when I was talking to the miserable bully I forgot everything else around me but him. That knowledge was not welcome. “Yeah,” I managed feebly.

“Good for you, though. You know how to handle him. I think I’d probably have been thrown off the plane before we even took off. You know, for swinging a punch at him.”

I laughed and thanked her, walking back to my seat feeling relief move through me that our flight was nearly over. As I approached, the Scot looked up at me. His gaze dropped to his computer but only for a millisecond before it flew back up. That arctic stare of his moved over my cleavage, now visible in the cami that was tucked into my high-waist pencil skirt.

A shiver I detested for betraying me skated down my neck.

His eyes flew back up to my face and he no longer looked right through me.

He appeared displeased.

Narrowing my eyes, wondering what the hell I’d done now, I gestured to my seat. “Can you let me back in?”

He snapped shut his laptop, dropping his table again. “High maintenance,” he murmured quietly.

I gripped the now empty seat in front of him and turned my back to him as I shimmied in. “Yeah, needing to pee is so high maintenance.”

My left foot hit his left foot and he pressed his knees in closer to the back of my thighs, trapping me.

I glanced over my shoulder, about to snap at him, only to catch him glaring at my ass. There was an angry heat in that stare, heat he hadn’t looked at me with before. The kind of heat a guy usually had in his eyes when he wanted to find the nearest bed and throw me on it.

Suddenly the image of him looming over me, his body pressed between my legs, flashed through me in a surge of fire that shocked and pissed me off in equal measure.

Huh.

I snapped my head back around, not going there. “Would you move?” I bit out.

His knees suddenly pulled back and I stumbled out of his space and tumbled into my seat with less grace than I’d have liked.

Feeling his gaze on me, I shot him what had to be the hundredth filthy look of the day. “What?”
Instead of answering he turned, bent down toward the aisle and came back up with my jacket in his hand. I hadn’t even realized I’d dropped it. He shoved it at me and I snatched it out of his hold.

“What? No thank you?” he mocked.

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the Gleam widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

Sunday Spotlight: October 2018

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About the Author

Samantha Young

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

Samantha Young is the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of adult contemporary romances, including the On Dublin Street series and Hero, as well as the New Adult duology Into the Deep and Out of the Shallows. Fight or Flight, a new standalone to be published by Berkley Romance, is out October 9th 2018. Before turning to contemporary fiction, she wrote several young adult paranormal and fantasy series, including the amazon bestselling Tale of Lunarmorte trilogy. Samantha’s YA contemporary novels The Impossible Vastness of Us and The Fragile Ordinary are published by Harlequin Teen. Her next adult contemporary romance As Dust Dances releases August 7th 2018. It follows the story of homeless ex-poprock star Skylar Finch and the ambitious Scottish A&R Exec Killian O’Dea who shakes up life as she knows it.

Samantha is from a small town in Central Scotland and is known for her romantic stories set in her beloved home country. She is currently published in 30 countries and is a #1 international bestselling author. When she’s not writing books, she’s buying shoes she doesn’t really need and searching for nooks and crannies to shelve her ever-expanding book collection.


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