Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Apprentice witch Catalina Gato is prohibited from assuming her human form in front of her new employer without his express permission. Since he doesn’t know he’s a warlock, he can’t give it, leaving her in a familiar’s limbo. To make matters worse, she’s barred from leaving his house, and her attempts to enlighten him of his true nature results in burnt notes, charred walls, and exploding laptops.
On All Hallows’ Eve, she gets one night of freedom. Deciding some no-strings-attached sex might take the edge off the intense attraction she feels for her clueless boss, she signs up for Madame Eve’s service. When she meets her masked mystery date at the Castillo Capital, she realizes she might have gotten much more than she bargained for.
After being gifted a one-night stand from his annoying best friend, attorney Leo Difuoco reluctantly ventures to the Castillo Capital to celebrate Halloween. When he meets his oddly familiar green-eyed date in a Cat Woman costume, flames literally ignite, sparks magically fly, and life as he knows it changes forever.
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Tara Quan's novella's are always a sure thing in my book. She is very talented at bringing her characters alive in a very short space of pages such that they never feel like cardboard stereotypes as is the case in many short stories and novellas. Her gift extends to storytelling as well, and she almost always manages to fit a lot of story into very few words such that you feel you've read a work that was twice as long as it actually is when you're finished. All of these caveats hold true in this latest tale of hers, though I have to admit that this one did leave me a bit less satisfied than some of her others have. While thoroughly enjoyable, I did feel that it could have done with a little more fleshing out perhaps.
Saturday, October 11, 2014
Family reunions can be Hell.
Nearly four hundred years ago, Sarah Latham and William Fuller disappeared without a trace.
Legend has it she was a wicked witch and he was her demon. Legend also has it that whenever a Latham descendent reaches thirty years of age, Sarah comes to drag them to Hell.
Good thing twenty-nine year old Elizabeth Latham doesn’t believe in legends. Or at least she didn’t until she happened upon a woman in the family cemetery who just happened to look an awful lot like the paintings in the local museum.
Elizabeth is determined to stay ground in reality, but her idea of reality is shattered when she realizes Sarah and William have returned. But Elizabeth quickly realizes that Sarah is about as far from wicked as William is from being a demon.
So if Sarah hasn’t been killing generations of Lathams…who has?
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I loved this story. Simply loved it. The characters, the story, pretty much everything about it, except perhaps the length. A part of me would have liked more time with these characters, more chance to get to know some of them better, just...more. And yet in this instance, I think the work as a whole might have suffered had it been extended out very much more.
Friday, October 10, 2014
What do you do when you can't stop yourself from becoming something you hate?
Tarial is changing. She knows what she'll become and she despises it. Half human, half dragon, duty demands she make use of the magic of her heritage.
But when an unexpected guest enters her life, everything she knows will be challenged.
Will his unique view alter her perspective? Can she hide the evidence of her ancestry, find love, and live a normal life? After a lifetime of denial, can she truly cage her dragon? Find out in Dragon Revealed.
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I wasn't sure what to expect from this book going into it, and having finished it I'm not sure if it was what I wanted it to be. I had faith that it would be good because I've never been very disappointed with any of this author's works, and I wasn't disappointed with this one either. Rich characters that come alive and pull you into their story combined with a steady pacing that keeps you engaged and turning the pages make this a fairly quick and entertaining read. Still, as I read, I found myself wanting something more -- though I'm not sure I could say what exactly.
Monday, October 6, 2014
Arrow's Fall is the third book in the Heralds of Valdemar Trilogy.
With Elspeth, the heir to the throne of Valdemar, come of marriageable age, Talia, the Queen's Own Herald returns to court to find Queen and heir beset by diplomatic intrigue as various forces vie for control of Elspeth's future.
But just as Talia is about to uncover the traitor behind all these intrigues, she is sent off on a mission to the neighboring kingdom, chosen by the Queen to investigate the worth of a marriage proposal from Prince Ancar. And, to her horror, Talia soon discovers there is far more going on at Prince Ancar's court than just preparation for a hoped-for royal wedding. For a different magic than that of the Heralds is loose in Ancar's realm- an evil and ancient sorcery that may destroy all of Valdemar unless Talia can send warning to her Queen in time!
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With this, the final book in the Heralds of Valdemar trilogy, we see many different plots come to maturity. Chief among them of course is Talia's story, for we finally get to see her taking on her full responsibilities as Queen's Own and we see her dealing with her personal problems and relationships in a much more mature fashion. Her main story arc comes to a close here, with most of her various relationship problems finally being resolved one way or another, though as the Weatherwitch Maeven had predicted in Arrow's Flight, her greatest joy is preceded by her greatest sorrow and by the darkest time in her life. The ending isn't really that, however, for as is a recurring theme with these books the ending of one thing is often simply the beginning of another. So, while the immediate introductory story concludes here, a much larger story that will encompass Valdemar and several of her allies and enemies is only just beginning.