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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Eternal Pleasure by Nina Bangs


The Eleven — an alliance of ultimate predators. Primal, lethal, irresistible.

The Prophecy — an ancient Mayan prediction that the world will end on 12-21-12.

The Prey — where can you hide from pure evil?

Kelly Maloy opens her car door to much more than a great looking stranger at the Houston airport. Terror, desire, and a horrible truth climb in with him. She's only supposed to drive Ty Endeka around the city for a few weeks. Too bad no one tells her that once day fades, she'll become part of a battle fought in the darkened streets with an enemy that isn't human. And the sensual man who feeds her fantasies hides a soul that gives new meaning to animal magnetism.

Eleven gods of the night...The only creatures more deadly are the ones they've been summoned to destroy.

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Get some crackers when you read this one, because there's plenty of cheese inside. It's the good sort of cheese though, the kind that makes a book laughably entertaining not simply groaningly bad. It may not fully qualify as being a "good book" but it's certainly a fun book to read so long as you're willing to tolerate all the eye-roll-worthy moments in it.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Coffee with Thunderbolts by Marianne G. Petrino


Elena Xharra is a young woman who has lost her sense of self and purpose. She flees her life in New York City, and heads to Arlington, Virginia, where her Aunt Rosemarian lives. She and her aunt have shared similar suffering. Unlike her critical mother, her aunt offers Elena love, some fun and a safe haven from the world. To improve both their lives, Rosemarian poses the question: What would you be willing to do to erase regret from your life. With the conjunction of the Sun and the Great Rift of the Milky Way coming on December 21, 2012, a doorway to adventure, possibility and wisdom opens for them. Coffee with Thunderbolts is an urban metaphysical novel that takes place in 2012 in Arlington, Virginia; Lexington, Kentucky; and Locust Grove, Ohio. It was written during the National Novel Writing Month of 2010.




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An interesting book that takes a long time to really find its feet. Much of the work has an almost surreal quality to it, with actions and events being described and yet visualization of them is hazy at best. In some ways it could almost be likened to the random wanderings the mind can take sometimes when very tired but being kept at some semblance of alertness with copious amounts of caffeine from coffee, much like how the characters in the book seem to be constantly drinking it to get through the day. Unfortunately, the vagueness with with large portions of the early part of the book are written hampers immersion in the story in my opinion, making it difficult to connect with the characters or the plot.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

My Lord Vampire by Debbie Raleigh (a/k/a Alexandra Ivy)


While the ton dances and gossips, another kind of society altogether claims the London night as its own. By the light of the moon, three noble vampires entrusted with the protection of their kind will discover that human desire is far from lost to them—and that love may be the only thing they long for more than life everlasting...

Midnight Kiss

When an old gypsy woman gives Sally Jenkins a mysterious amulet—promising much happiness if she safeguards it, and doom if she gives it to another—Sally is intrigued. Born on the wrong side of the coverlet, and currently her half sister's drudge, Sally has never had anything of value to call her own. Then a tragic carriage accident en route to London suddenly presents Sally with the chance to live her near twin's life.

Masquerading as Simone Gilbert, Sally is soon the toast of the ton, hosting dazzling parties and cozy salons—and the object of two men's dogged courtship. Sally senses a dangerous hunger beneath Tristan Soltern's smooth-mannered interest that repulses her, but she is drawn to elegant, black-eyed Gideon Ravel—and tempted to prove to him that she is exactly what she seems.

It's a risky game—especially when she discovers that Gideon himself is something other than the refined gentleman she believes him to be, something far more dangerous and unbearably seductive...

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This book starts off from an interesting premise and for the most part delivers on it. You've got the good vamp, the evil vamp, and the human maiden that's caught in the tug of war between them. She's duly repulsed by the evil one without really knowing why, and strangely drawn to the good one, again without really knowing why. Add in the backdrop of London high society and you potentially have enough varied intrigue to keep things really interesting. Unfortunately there's a certain flatness and predictability to it all. Not entirely, for the author does keep you guessing just how exactly it's all going to play out, and she does keep one or two surprises up her sleeve, but still I found it to be lacking a bit in depth.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Master of None by Sonya Bateman


ONE UNLUCKY THIEF. ONE UNLIKELY GENIE. ONE VERY ODD COUPLE.

Gavyn Donatti is the world's unluckiest thief. Just ask all the partners he's lost over the years. And when he misplaces an irreplaceable item he was hired to steal for his ruthless employer, Trevor—well, his latest bungle just might be his last. But then his luck finally turns: right when Trevor's thugs have him cornered, a djinn, otherwise known as a genie, appears to save him.

Unfortunately, this genie—who goes by the very non-magical name of "Ian"—is more Hellboy than dream girl. An overgrown and extremely surly man who seems to hate Donatti on the spot, he may call Donatti master, but he isn't interested in granting three wishes. He informs Donatti that he is bound to help the thief fulfill his life's purpose, and then he will be free. The problem is that neither Donatti nor Ian has any idea what exactly that purpose is.

At first Donatti's too concerned with his own survival to look a gift genie in the mouth, but when his ex-girlfriend Jazz and her young son get drawn into the crossfire, the stakes skyrocket. And when Ian reveals that he has an agenda of his own—with both Donatti and the murderous Trevor at the center of it—Donatti will have to become the man he never knew he could be, or the entire world could pay the price. . . .

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While I enjoyed this book for the most part, I'm not entirely sure what to say about it now. The story was different, and fairly original, and the characters were mostly all likeable and believable, but there was just something a bit lacking about it I suppose. Despite the fact that I enjoyed it while I was reading, it never really grabbed and held my attention as much as some books do, and that's a large part of why I'm not rating it higher.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Drop Dead Sexy by Elisa Adams


Faced with writing an article about men's sexual fantasies, Joy turns to her sexy neighbor Nathan for a little inspiration. She just wants him to answer a few questions, but Nathan has a more hands-on approach in mind and Joy is more than agreeable to spending some time between the sheets. She never imagined her neighbor is keeping secrets. Dark, deep secrets he never intended for her to learn.Nathan thinks he has it all worked out. Spend a little time getting to know his neighbor on a very intimate level, get her out of his system and move on. He doesn't realize that Joy has a secret of her own, and it threatens to tear both their worlds apart—or bind them together forever.

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A cute story, but not really a lot of substance to it. While the main characters are likeable enough, we never really get to know them all that well. That makes it difficult, at least for me, to get too involved with what happens to them. They're just two people who finally decide to stop ignoring the attraction between them and have sex. Two people with secrets that throw some interesting wrenches into things. Still, the big reveal doesn't elicit much more than a shrug since it was easy to see coming, and, as noted above, you don't really know them well enough to care that much. Still, it's a well written story and an enjoyable short read when you just want a sexy story that doesn't make you think too much.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Tragedy of the Virgin Bride by Xavier Edwards


After centuries in the extended family, the old manor — once a castle — looks like it is to finally pass from the family line. For Josephine, this is just the latest tragedy she has had to face and, from her point of view, there is nothing but heartbreak in her future.

All it not as it seems — leaving Josephine struggling with the massive upheaval to her normal routine. Amongst this, she continues to hope for final redemption with her husband.

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A sweet story of a love that was thwarted in the past, and the trials (at least some of them) that the ill-fated lovers have endured in spirit form since their death as they have sought a way to be together again. The location and time periods involved are left rather vague, so it's a little hard to form precise mental images of the setting and characters, though the bulk of the narrative does take place essentially in modern time.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James


When literature student Anastasia Steele goes to interview young entrepreneur Christian Grey, she encounters a man who is beautiful, brilliant, and intimidating. The unworldly, innocent Ana is startled to realize she wants this man and, despite his enigmatic reserve, finds she is desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her, too—but on his own terms.

Shocked yet thrilled by Grey’s singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success—his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving family—Grey is a man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a daring, passionately physical affair, Ana discovers Christian Grey’s secrets and explores her own dark desires.



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This book has been reviewed by many, many people, most of whom are far better at the review craft than I am. So, I'll simply endeavor to offer my observations, opinions, etc. about this somewhat controversial and rather polarizing book.