Tuesday, October 30, 2007

HURRY!!! for Gena Showalter's ARC contest.

The party has started over on Gena Showalter's blog. This author of awesome paranormal romances is having a blog-party to celebrate this week's release of books from other great authors. Today (MONDAY), she is having a contest on her blog for a signed ARC of Savor Me Slowly - she'll be drawing on Tuesday morning, I think, so enter quick!


If you don't make it in time for this contest, pop on over to her blog anyway - she'll be running new contests everyday (M-F) this week. Woohoo! Contests!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Embrace The Darkness by Alexandra Ivy

Release Date: October 30, 2007
The Blurb:
Lady Shay is the last of her kind. Half human, half Shalott, her blood is a precious aphrodisiac to vampires, who consider it more precious than gold. Though Shalotts are renowned assassins, a curse held over Shay lands her on the slave auction block, where her fate is uncertain...
Viper, the beguiling chief of a deadly vampire clan, can't explain his longing to possess the beautiful Shalott who once saved his life, but now he is free to do anything he wants with her. Strangely, while he desires both Shay's blood and body, he wants her to surrender willingly.
A hidden evil has been stalking Shay since she left the slave market with Viper. It is an evil that endangers the very existence of Viper's kind, and there's no reason he should court such danger just to protect a Shalott. But the love he feels for Shay is enough to make him willing to go to hell and back if it means spending an eternity with her in his arms...

My Thoughts:
It's been less than a year since the first book in Alexandra Ivy’s (aka Deborah Raleigh) Guardians of Eternity series came out but I (and many others that I know) have been EAGERLY awaiting book two. It's finally here! For those who may not have read the first book yet, Embrace the Darkness is about two interesting secondary characters that we met in Book 1.

I LOVED THIS BOOK! Yep, you heard me. Looooooovvvveeeed it! The characterizations are fabulous - I really felt like I connected with both Viper and Shay. The storyline was exciting, well written, and kept me glued to the book until the very last page.

Viper is a great hero. Although he buys Shay from from the slave auction, he is not quite sure why he buys her or what exactly he's going to do with her, but he knows that he must have her with him - he has been unable to shake the memory of her from his mind since they fought the witches together (in book 1). In fact, before 'buying' her he spent weeks setting up the bedroom and things she would need (or want) to be comfortable in his house. He finds Shay to be exotically beautiful, exciting and a little dangerous with a core of honor and courage and it isn't long before he finally realizes what it is he wants - her... forever.

Shay is totally pissed that Viper buys her after she saved his life and although he calls her "pet" (which I find so sexy but he kinda does it to rile her up) as a nickname, he takes her home and essentially treasures her. He is strong, sexy, tender and he leaves Shay feeling TOTALLY confused. She's never had a 'master' treat her like Viper does and to top it off he is a vampire whom she would normally distrust and despise after her father was murdered by one and she has been in danger of becoming a delicious vampire snack (because of her Shallot blood) since birth. She can't bring herself to hate him though, the attraction is too strong and she begins to see much to admire and love in her vampire 'owner' who doesn't act like he owns her at all but rather like an equal and willing lover.

The big conflict/suspense of the storyline is that someone else wants Shay - bad enough to attack and kill anyone or anything in their way. This element is very well plotted and ties up very nicely in the end. Ms. Ivy also started the set up for the next book (Styx's) enough to make me hunger for his book without giving too much away or getting in the way of Viper and Shay's story. The next book in this awesome new series, Darkness Everlasting will be out in May 2008 - I can't wait!

I highly recommend this book for readers who love parnormal and vampire romance! It's an excellent example of the paranormal sub-genre that balances the paranormal, the romance, and the suspense elements to create a riveting effect on the reader. It's not essential to read the first book in the series to get into this one (it's pretty stand-alone) but I recommend reading When Darkness Comes anyway just because it was so good.

My Rating for Embrace the Darkness:

Friday, October 26, 2007

True Deception by Patricia Waddell

The Blurb:
A man who lives for revenge and a woman who clings to hope. Together they fight a common enemy . . . and discover a passion neither one dreamed could exist.

Aedon Rawn’s world died the day his wife and child were murdered by Conglomerate pirates. Now, his only reason for living is to avenge their deaths. The Directorate gives him that opportunity when he’s selected to become their first undercover agent. His mission: infiltrate and destroy the oppressive government of an outer region colony.

Kala Char’ari is a woman in need of a miracle. She’s dedicated her life to freeing her people, but they're on the edge of extinction. Risking everything, she dares to trust a dark stranger with the hardened heart of a warrior.

My thoughts:
The storyline of True Deception is pretty basic and one familiar to lovers of futuristic romance. The people of Hachyn are being oppressed and abused by the government and Kala is the second-in-command to (and being trained to be the next) the leader of the resistance. When her mentor is killed she has to put her trust in Korcian undercover agent, Aedon Rawn (although she doesn't KNOW he's an undercover agent). She's attracted to him and despite the fact that their first sexual encounter seems to be more of a result of her grief over the loss of her father-figure/mentor than true lust, she falls in love with the man that she knows is keeping secrets but cannot resist following her instincts and believing he means to help them fight the Conglomerate.

Aedon's wife and daughter were killed by the Conglomerate (the same gov't responsible for oppressing the people of Hachyn, and he wants revenge - his assignment is to assist the freedom fighters of Hachyn in overthrowing the conglomerate reps there and destroying factories that the Directorate (the good guys) believe may be producing weapons. When Aedon meets Kala he begins to feel emotions he thought he'd never feel again after the loss of his family

I really liked the first book in this series, True Blood. It was a wonderful futuristic romance - the perfect blend of romance, danger, and suspense.

This second book was a bit of a disappointment though. It was not bad, it was actually an OK read but I felt the story itself was kind of blah and the attraction between the H/h didn't feel very 'sparky' or real. I wasn't pulled into the story -probably because is was heavily detailed on the suspense side and not developed enough in the romance - I didn't really get to know enough about the main characters' "inner" selves enough to care or feel connected. But the part that took this book from a "Keeper" to a "Library" rating was that the ending felt somewhat incomplete and there were several random threads in the story that were never resolved, had no discernable purpose but seemed important at the time they were introduced, or were resolved too easily - that frustrates me because I have such a curiosity problem.

On the other hand, Ms. Waddell did an excellent job portraying Aedon's need for revenge and sorrow over the murder of his wife and child without it becoming an overblown conflict or letting it detract from the relationship between the H/h. While I don't highly recommend True Deception, it was a decent read - I have definitely NOT given up on this author or this series. I do highly recommend the first book True Blood though - it was a total keeper!

My rating for TRUE DECEPTION by Patricia Waddell:

Thursday, October 25, 2007

What I've been reading

Just to get caught up since I was MIA for so long here are some recommendations for GREAT books that I read earlier this month but won't be going back to review:

Wicked Pleasure & Wicked Fantasy by Nina Bangs - paranormal

Unmasked by CJ Barry - futuristic

Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning - paranormal (it's written in first person though *gag*)

An Enchanted Season Anthology (I recommend Nalini Singh's contribution only - the rest were pretty blah) - Paranormal

The Sword, The Wolf, The Master by Joan Johnson - Paranormal (this is a FABULOUS series!)

Planet X by Evangeline Anderson - Futuristic

I discovered a couple of AWESOME new authors and read a bunch of their books I highly recommend:

Joanna Wylde (her books are available at EC) - futuristic

Lisa Renee Jones paranormal

Here an ARC, there an ARC, everywhere an ARC ARC

Alright.... y'all will have to rush on some of these but here are some of the interesting ARC contests happening this month:

Alexis Morgan (*sigh* Paladins make me HOT!) is having a contest for an ARC of her upcoming book Redeemed in Darkness. It's real easy to enter.

Enter Sarah McCarty's contest for an ARC of Caine's Reckoning at http://www.sarahmccarty.net/contest.html

Win and Advanced Reading Copy of Lucy Monroe's upcoming book Deal With This.

Now, I've never read this author (she looks a little too tame for me) but just in case any of you are interested: Lauren Willig is offering an ARC of The Seduction of the Crimson Rose.

Cynthia Eden has a Halloween giveaway on the Bradford Bunch blog for an ARC of A Red Hot New Year. http://www.thebradfordbunch.com/cynthia/arc-giveaway-and-another-contest-too/

There were more great contests but my fever is back and I'm going to bed now. Damn cold! But I do want to make mention of a contest that Casee posted over at Book Binge for an autographed set of Robyn Carr's trilogy. Check it out! http://thebookbinge.blogspot.com/ This one ends Friday so BE QUICK!

On the upside, at the bookstore today I got:
Star Shadows by Colby Hodge
True Deception by Patricia Waddell
Embrace the Darkness by Alexandra Ivy
Highland Guardian by Melissa Mayhue
Howl at the Moon by Christine Warren (who has her website updated now and it looks GREAT!)


Monday, October 22, 2007


Yes, I'm alive (thanks for checking on me, Casee. You're a sweetie!). I hope everyone hasn't crossed me off of their blog-destinations since it's been so long. I had an express college course that was kicking my butt plus it seems like the kids have been in a perpetual state of illness. I swear I've spent more time in various doctor's offices with the kids in the last month than I did for the entire year of 2006. It's been a WILD time!

Anyway, I'm back. In fact, I'm going out to the bookstore today and, book-gods willing, they'll hopefully have some of the new releases that I'm looking for in stock and I'll be blogging about them soon and I have at least 3 great ARC contests to tell you all about.

Here's a little something as a reward for coming back to see me even though I've been MIA for OVER a month!
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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

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And for my friend Y:
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