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Rabid Reads

Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. I also offer virtual assistance to authors and web maintenance services. rabidreads.ca

Currently reading

Cold Burn of Magic
Jennifer Estep
Grave Peril
Jim Butcher
Progress: 110/719 minutes

Review: Accidental Abduction by Eve Langlais

Review: Accidental Abduction by Eve Langlais
Accidental Abduction
Author: Eve Langlais
Series: Alien Abduction #1
Publisher: Indie
Published on: May 22, 2011
Genre: Science Fiction
Format: 142 pages, eBook
Provided by: Purchased
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He didn't mean to abduct the human female, but now that he has her, should he kill her or take her as his mate?

A boyfriend's attempted murder leaves Megan floundering in the ocean. Sinking without hope, the bright light she sees in the night sky isn't her doorway to heaven, but rather the beginning of her accidental abduction by a space pirate. While thankful of his rescue, Megan stays true to form and just can't keep her mouth shut, even when he keeps threatening to kill her--or auction her off to the highest bidder.

Tren retired from his job as a mercenary so he could enjoy life, but he never counted on the boredom of normalcy. The acquisition of rare items has somewhat filled the void, but his accidental abduction of an outspoken earthling, turns his life upside down. Her fiery spirit draws him while at the same time drives him insane. Struggling with his urges, he must decide-- throttle her barbarian neck or ravish her?

Despite what his heart tries to tell him, he's determined to sell her to the highest bidder even as he seduces her body. However, despite his best intentions, he discovers he can't let her go. And when a foe from his past thinks to steal her, he'll do anything to get her back.

I had no idea what to expect when I started this book. It’s my first read by this author and I have to say, it certainly was different.

“Maybe drowning won’t be so bad” When a book starts out like that, it did peak my interest right away. Megan is threading water in the middle of the Pacific Ocean where her con man boyfriend has left her to die. Out of the blue(literally), a spaceship starts lifting her up, along with a lot of ocean life, up into the opening of the ship. The ship belongs to Tren, a large purple creature that looks a lot like a human, but isn’t. He’s a former mercenary, and is now engaged in obtaining rare finds for collectors in other universes. And Megan just might be the rarest he has ever procured, especially when he decides to keep her to sell in the sex slave trade-and not one on earth.

Megan is one of the spunkiest heroines I have come across lately. She’s got a potty mouth, she doesn’t take anything off of anyone, and proceeds to drive Tren crazy with her non-stop talking, and her lustful personality. Lusty, sexy, any other name to do with sex- that describes Megan. Tren is considered one of the biggest bad asses of the galaxy, due to his mercenary jobs. Most people are scared to death of him, but not so Megan. She fights Tren every step of the way, and of course they spend a lot of smexy times together on their way to take her to be traded.

This story isn’t meant to be serious. It’s very lighthearted, and when there are dangerous situations, it just gets all cleared up way too fast. For some reason, it almost reminded me of a sexy cartoon-it was so hard to picture a purple hero without my mind going there. The other thing it really reminded me of, was the Star Wars bar scene, with all the different types of alien creatures. That part was very imaginative, I thought.

It was kind of a fun read, I will give it that. But it wasn’t exactly my favorite read, and as I said before, it wasn’t what I expected. I think I thought it would be more serious, and I did miss that a lot. I did like Tren, but Megan, while I liked her in the beginning, wasn’t a favorite by the end. Just irritating. I guess I am just used to there being more. More adventure, more story, and even more violence, as opposed to sex scenes every few pages. It kept me reading, so it is easily read, and it is a series, but I don’t think I will be continuing. I do, however, still want to try a shifter book by this author. I would recommend this to lighthearted (and very sexy), adult romance fans, and I know there are lots of people that will completely enjoy this read, it just wasn’t a good one for me.

Lorna Signature

Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/review-accidental-abduction-by-eve-langlais.html

Interview, Early Review and Giveaway: Dark Debt by Chloe Neill


Happy Friday, and welcome to my stop on Chloe Neill’s DARK DEBT blog tour! I have a quick Q&A with the author to share with you, as well as my review, and a giveaway. I hope your one-click finger is warmed up because the next installment in the CHICAGOLAND VAMPIRES series hits shelves next Tuesday, and you won’t want to miss it.

1. Chicago and the mafia are practically synonymous which is why I’m surprised that the CHICAGOLAND VAMPIRES managed to avoid any encounters with the seedier side of the Windy City for 10 installments. What made you decide to finally explore this type of plot arc?


I think because Merit and Ethan aren’t usually involved in the types of crimes that a criminal syndicate would deal with–like those that deal with money. The CPD doesn’t necessarily need vampire experts for that, generally. At least, not until DARK DEBT…

2. Merit’s taste in food is pretty eclectic, and ranges from blood (obviously) to Mallocakes to deep dish pizza, but what’s her f-a-v-o-u-r-i-t-e thing to chow down on, and why? Do you have a ultimate midwest dish?


I think pizza is probably her favorite chow down food, although she wouldn’t argue with a burger and fries, either. I’m pretty much the same. :) I’m southern, so many of my personal favorite dishes are southern, too. Chicken and dumplings, collard greens, cornbread, southern-style mac and cheese. Although when it comes to a weekend splurge, I’m a nacho girl all the way.

3. As one of the topmost authorities on all things werewolf I’m honour-bound to ask; have your shifters been permanently sidelined after WILD THINGS or do still have plans for them? Vague hints are welcome. Please!


The shifters are never sidelined. LUCKY BREAK features much shiftery goodness, and there’s still the matter of the prophecy to deal with…

4.Novellas are a fairly new addition to your CHICAGOLAND VAMPIRES series; do you enjoy writing them more or less than full length installments? Why?


I enjoy them differently. I usually have two or three plots in any story, and weaving them together into a shorter story can be complicated. But it also give me a chance, like in LUCKY BREAK, to explore a completely different setting, which was a lot of fun.


Thanks so much for having me!


Author Bio

Chloe Neill is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Devil’s Isle, Chicagoland Vampires, and Dark Elite series. She was born and raised in the South, but now makes her home in the Midwest. When not writing, she bakes, works, and scours the Internet for good recipes and great graphic design. Chloe also maintains her sanity by spending time with her boys–her favorite landscape photographer/husband and their dogs, Baxter and Scout. (Both she and the photographer understand the dogs are in charge.) Photo © Dana Damewood.

ChloeNeill.com | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest
GoodReads | Amazon

My Review

Interview, Early Review and Giveaway: Dark Debt by Chloe Neill
Dark Debt
Author: Chloe Neill
Series: Chicagoland Vampires #11
Publisher: NAL
Published on: March 3, 2015
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Format: 400 pages, ARC
Provided by: Publisher

A vampire never gets old. But neither do his enemies. When a figure from Ethan's dark past makes a splashy debut in Chicago, Merit and her Master don't know whether he's friend or foe. But they'll have to figure out soon, because trouble is brewing in the Windy City.

At an exclusive society soiree attended by the upper echelons of the human and supernatural worlds, Merit and Ethan barely stop the assassination of a guest. When the target turns out to be a shady businessman with a criminal edge, Merit suspects a human vendetta. But the assassins have fangs....

The connections to Chicago's Houses go deeper than Merit knows, and even one wrong move could be her last....
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Addictive Rereadable


Chicago has a reputation for good food, crappy weather, and organized crime; Chloe Neill makes a point of including the first two in practically every installment, but the third had yet to surface. DARK DEBT rocketed into the previous book’s cliff hanger with little delay while also paving the way for a new mafia plot thread that will in all likelihood become this series’ latest story arc. The secondary characters were the headliners of this novel for me with Mallory & Catcher at the head of the pack.

Merit is ever so gradually becoming a ‘real’ vampire after her unorthodox transformation in SOME GIRLS BITE, and the most recent undead trait that she has to contend with is glamour. She’s skated by on immunity for ten books, but the time has come to pay the piper. Her pound of flesh came at a pretty high price, and I was afraid that it would be yet another obstacle between her and Ethan. Speaking of Cadogan House’s master, his solution was uber uninspired, so I was happy that 1. Merit vetoed it, and 2. She conquered her snag.

The author nimbly pulled the wool over our eyes as far as antagonists go. There were two enemies stirring the waters of Lake Michigan in this installment; one was obvious until he wasn’t while as the other stayed on the DL until he could deliver a direct hit. I really enjoyed how this story’s plot developed, Neill never does anything without a reason, and even though her ploys don’t always make sense at the time, they eventually complete their circuit in a rewarding way, so I look forward to seeing where she takes her gangster thread.

Mallory & Catcher were the masters of all things feels in this novel. I wish I could blurt out the why of it, but their aaww moment was too good to spoil. Morgan’s been the gum at the bottom of the CHICAGOLAND VAMPIRES shoe since day 1, therefore I was kinda stunned when he manned-up, and I found myself genuinely liking him. The same can be said of Merit’s dad, he’s definitely not a candidate for father of the year however after his actions in this book there may be hope for him yet. Jonah on the other hand… what a hypocrite!

Chloe Neill strikes again with DARK DEBT!

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The fun doesn’t stop here. Want more chances to win? You can also enter the Dark Debt Grand Prize Giveaway, which runs February 23 through March 6 on Chloe’s web site.

Grand Prize Giveaway:

  • An engraved Cadogan House medal necklace
  • A Kindle Paperwhite
  • Cadogan House cotton tote bag
  • Cadogan House keychian
  • Chicagoland Vampires bookmarks, pens, and lanyard


Tour Stop Giveaway: (enter via below Rafflecopter)

  • Cadogan House cotton tote bag
  • Cadogan House keychain
  • An autographed international Chicagoland Vampires or Dark Elite novel
  • Swag, including Chicagoland Vampires bookmarks and pens, and Cadogan House lanyards
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Follow The Tour!


February 23:
Finding Sanity in Our Crazy Life
Lore Lush Books

February 24:
Star Crossed Book Blog
Little Miss Book Addict’s House of Books

February 25:
Once Upon a Twilight
Krista’s Dust Jacket

February 26:
Goldilox and the Three Weres
Angel’s Guilty Pleasures

February 27:
Feeling Fictional
Rabid Reads
March 2:
Booklovers for Life
Bad Bird Reads

March 3:
Saucy Wenches Book Club
Nomi’s Paranormal Palace
Fangs, Wands & Fairy Dust
Vampire Book Club

March 4:
Ceres Book World
Book Infatuation Reviews

March 5:
Consummate Reader

March 6:
Little Read Riding Hood
Three Chicks After Dark


Carmel Signature

Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/interview-early-review-giveaway-dark-debt-by-chloe-neill.html

Review: Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier

Review: Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier
Daughter of the Forest
Author: Juliet Marillier
Series: Sevenwaters #1
Publisher: Tor Books
Published on: May 5, 2000
Genre: Fantasy
Format: 560 pages, eBook
Provided by: Purchased
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Lovely Sorcha is the seventh child and only daughter of Lord Colum of Sevenwaters. Bereft of a mother, she is comforted by her six brothers who love and protect her. Sorcha is the light in their lives, they are determined that she know only contentment.

But Sorcha's joy is shattered when her father is bewitched by his new wife, an evil enchantress who binds her brothers with a terrible spell, a spell which only Sorcha can lift-by staying silent. If she speaks before she completes the quest set to her by the Fair Folk and their queen, the Lady of the Forest, she will lose her brothers forever.

When Sorcha is kidnapped by the enemies of Sevenwaters and taken to a foreign land, she is torn between the desire to save her beloved brothers, and a love that comes only once. Sorcha despairs at ever being able to complete her task, but the magic of the Fair Folk knows no boundaries, and love is the strongest magic of them all...

BOOKLOVE ADDICTIVE magical nomnom fantasy


Everything I could tell you about Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier can be summed up in a single paragraph from the story itself:

If I were telling this tale, and it were not my own, I would give it a neat, satisfying ending . . . In such stories, there are no loose ends. There are no unraveled edges and crooked threads. Daughters do not give their hearts to the enemy. The wicked do not simply disappear, taking with them the satisfaction of vengeance. Young men do not find themselves divided between two worlds. Fathers know their children.
But this was my own story.

Daughter of the Forest may have a happy ending, but is not a happy tale. It is full of terrible ironies, of monsters and men, of betrayals and heartbreak and endurance.


And it is absolutely beautiful.


Sorcha is the first daughter who should have been the seventh son. Her mother did not survive her birth, and her parents had loved each other so deeply that her father never fully recovered from the loss.


Instead he threw himself into the protection of his lands, and plotting to win back the three islands of great spiritual significance, stolen by the Britons.


On the rare occasions he was at home:

He didn’t smile at me. Or at Finbar. Finbar said that was because we reminded Father of our mother, who had died. We were the two who inherited her curling, wild hair. I had her green eyes, and Finbar her gift for stillness. Besides, by being born I had killed her.

(It burrrrrrrrns us, preciousssssssssssssss.)


But Sorcha had her six elder brothers who carried her along with them on their adventures, and so she was happy.


For a time.


But as her brothers grew, they began to leave, campaigning with their father, and when the eldest became engaged, Sorcha knew that no matter how hard she fought against it, her world was forever changing.


And when the brother she has always been closest to enlists her help in freeing a prisoner, she begins her journey down a path with trials so numerous that the Fair Folk themselves have warned her of what she will face before the end.


I laughed. I cried. I raged. I pleaded. I loved, and my heart was broken. All b/c of this book.


If it wasn’t for an ugly rape scene, Daughter of the Forest would have been my second 5.0 star read in over a year, so if you absolutely cannot handle that sort of thing, you have been duly warned. If you’re unsure, I strongly suggest you check out Kat Kennedy‘s review on Goodreads. BUT. If you think you can handle it . . . I know this isn’t the first time I’ve sung Juliet Marillier’s praises, but this time I entreat you: if you love fantasy at all, if you love fairy tales or retellings at all, read this book.


It is magic.


Highly recommended.





Was this review helpful to you? If so, please consider voting for it on Amazon or like it on Goodreads!
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Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/review-daughter-of-the-forest-by-juliet-marillier.html

Question: Do You Multi-Task While Listening To Audiobooks?


I discovered the marvels of audiobooks back in 2011 with Richelle Mead’s GEORGINA KINCAID series, and from there started listening to roughly one title a month. I didn’t take an immediate liking to them, struggled with my fair share of crappy narrators, and learned the hard way that anything over 20 hours caused me to lose interest. So, if you’re thinking that they aren’t for you, trust me when I say that I get it. However, after four years of trial & error they now make up close to 50% of my annual consumption of novels, and I’m constantly seeking out new excuses to listen.

The most obvious being household chores; #1 does all of the cooking (lucky me!) which means that I’m the designated dish washer, and I’m totally fine with that, especially when I have a wonderful narrator to keep me company. Laundry and cleaning are two other tasks that suck a whole lot less when I have my earbuds in. We live in the country where hard water is a fact of life, so if I want a white bathtub I have to dedicate several hours to scrubbing that bitch, and listening to an Urban Fantasy heroine kick baddie butt motivates me to do the same to my tub. I’m also seriously contemplating investing in a pair of noise cancelling headphones because I cut A LOT of grass in the summer, and my lawn tractor doesn’t have a cupholder which makes drinking beer tricky. I’m in desperate need of another source of entertainment. #firstworldproblems

Audiobooks are equally awesome for long work commutes, ignoring coworkers during your lunch break, and tackling menial responsibilities such as filing, and data entry. My iPhone is usually at my side whenever I’m drafting tedious blog posts such as my Fresh Meat feature, updating the Kindle Deals page, and doing maintenance stuff like adding review links to the archive or cleaning up the sidebar. I listen when I go for walks with my dogs, play Candy Crush—my current Facebook gaming addiction—and when my eyes are too tired to read after a long day of staring at a monitor. As you can probably tell, I’m doing alright with finding reasons to plug in, but I welcome more suggestions! :)

Do You Multi-Task While Listening To Audiobooks?

Have a bookish question you’d like Rabid Reads to weigh-in on? E-mail me, and be sure you include your blog URL (if you have one), so we can give you credit!

Carmel Signature

Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/question-do-you-multi-task-while-listening-to-audiobooks.html

Reading progress update: I've read 100%.

Lion's Share (Wildcats Book 1) - Rachel Vincent

When I finished this book at midnight last night I thought I liked it, but I just wrote my review, and apparently not. The heroine was infuriating, Jace was a pussy, and the world-building was almost non-existent because the author assumed everyone has read her SHIFTERS series. Full review to follow.

Review: Seeker by Arwen Elys Dayton

Review: Seeker by Arwen Elys Dayton
Author: Arwen Elys Dayton
Series: Seeker #1
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Published on: February 10 2015
Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Format: 448 pages, eARC
Provided by: NetGalley
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Quin Kincaid has been put through years of brutal training for what she thinks is the noble purpose of becoming a revered ‘Seeker’.

Only when it’s too late does she discover she will be using her new-found knowledge and training to become an assassin. Quin's new role will take her around the globe, from a remote estate in Scotland to a bustling, futuristic Hong Kong where the past she thought she had escaped will finally catch up with her.

!@#$ wtf2 twisted


My mother and I were at constant loggerheads when I was growing up, and the reason for that was simple: she hated being questioned as much as I hated being expected to blindly follow orders.


It was a problem.


Stubbornly, she’d rail at me, demanding I do things “b/c I said so” (my stubbornness resulting in constant groundings, I never stopped demanding to know why I should or shouldn’t do a thing.




Am I comparing my mother to the particularly nasty breed of mercenary that Quin (our MC)’s father Briac is?


No . . . well, maybe a little bit . . .


I’m kidding! *whispers* Kind of . . .


But I am explaining why I have a hard time being sympathetic to Quin and Shinobu (her cousin . . . sort of . . . )’s situation.


As hard as I tried to walk in their shoes, being “raised to obey Briac’s word as law,” was never going to be a circumstance I could empathize with.


Add to that the willful memory loss of one, and the rampant drug use/general recklessness of the other as coping mechanisms, and . . . yeah . . . REALLY not feeling these characters.


But there’s a reason for that: the more a work of fiction resembles reality, the less I am likely to enjoy it.


I know that about myself. It’s not a good thing or a bad thing, it’s just a thing. So if you like grittier plot lines where the characters behave disreputably, either b/c they are in fact disreputable and embrace it, or b/c they are weak, and deal with their guilt in realistic, vice-filled ways, then you might really like this book.


I didn’t have the same problems with Seeker that a lot of other readers had. As brief as the synopsis is, I actually read it (for once), and I thought it explained the situation fairly well. Quin has been trained all her short life to be a Seeker. She’s been told countless stories detailing the noble exploits of past Seekers. But when she actually becomes a Seeker herself, she discovers that she has been misled (<------gross understatement).


What exactly is a Seeker?


Well, I’ll grant you that it was never said outright, but it was pretty obvious to me that a Seeker was a member of an organization of highly trained warriors whose purpose was to objectively right wrongs (whatever that means).




Over time, that organization has become corrupt, and they are now nothing more than an unscrupulous band of assassins. This transpired without intervention from the leadership, b/c, as is often the case with supremely long-lived beings, the person in charge is almost completely removed from the world, trusting his younger (though still very, very old) mentees to alert him to anything warranting his attention. BUT the elder of the two mentees is clearly corrupt himself.


Another complaint I’ve seen a lot is poor world-building, and it was definitely not a strength. However, as the world pretty clearly resembles our own, I didn’t find the lack of explanation too upsetting. I just assumed it was 100(ish) years in the future. The end.




Doesn’t sound so bad, does it?


And yet . . .


Seeker is pitched as a book that defies genres. And that’s true. But unlike other genre-defying books, for example, Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor, the various genres didn’t really mesh together well. DoS&B is part urban fantasy, part fantasy, and it works b/c it takes place in two separate worlds. In comparison, Seeker tries to be both science fiction and fantasy in the same world . . . and it’s a house divided against itself.


The problem with trying to write a traditional “high” fantasy-type book, but having it take place in the modern (or slightly in the future) world is that who cares about a magic ATH-uh-may that cuts through space (like a . . . knife *rolls eyes*) when you could just take an airplane like a normal assassin? I mean, there are “air cars” that presumably fly, and I’m pretty sure they still have normal airplanes in addition to the weird airship thing that one of the characters lives on (and if they don’t, that’s stupid). And yeah, a magical cuts-through-space-like-a-Stargate-wormhole-knife is slightly more convenient…but only slightly. *shrugs*


Modernity kind of steals fantasy’s thunder . . .


And then there’s the John. John is also an MC, but he’s a bit separate from Quin and Shinobu, b/c his main goal is vengeance. So focused is he on restoring his family to its former glory, and avenging his ancestors, including, but not limited to his mother (whom he watched die at the hands of a rival Seeker when he was child) that he justifies the basest of tactics to achieve his goal.


So the best bet of a sympathetic character becomes as disgusting and pathetic as all the others.


Overall, I had too many objections to enjoy Seeker. The writing was mediocre at best, the mashup of genres made the individual elements less compelling, and the MCs behaved abominably, either b/c they didn’t have the strength of character to disobey a clearly treacherous leader, or b/c they’re so fixated on retribution that they willfully become that which they hate. Not recommended.


Was this review helpful to you? If so, please consider voting for it on Amazon or like it on Goodreads!

Jessica Signature

Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/review-seeker-by-arwen-elys-dayton.html

Reading progress update: I've listened 110 out of 719 minutes.

Grave Peril - Jim Butcher


Reading progress update: I've read 61%.

Lion's Share (Wildcats Book 1) - Rachel Vincent

This whole underhanded crap is starting to get on my nerves. Abby's secret better be good!

Audiobook Review: Captivated by You by Sylvia Day

Captivated by You - Sylvia Day

I've been procrastinating listening to this audiobook since November, but when Valentine's Day rolled around I decided that I was due for a guilty pleasure kind of title, and nothing fit the bill quite like Gideon & Ava Cross. I was also excited that this series FINALLY added a second narrator. As much as I've been enjoying Jill Redfield's performance, certain characters need that extra edge that only a male voice can bring, and I was hoping that Jeremy York would be up to the task. I wish that they'd read ALL of their respective personage's dialogues rather than just their specific chapters, but that's a common complaint of mine with dual readings. However, other than that, I had no issues with either of the narrators. My problems were with the lack of advancement on any front. Gideon & Ava are still struggling with the exact same obstacles only different versions of them, the story arc didn't really go anywhere, and the ending left me feeling like the next novel was going to be more of the same. CAPTIVATED BY YOU was like watching a dog try to catch its tail; painful and an exercise in futility.

Review: The Forever Girl by Rebecca Hamilton

Review: The Forever Girl by Rebecca Hamilton
The Forever Girl
Author: Rebecca Hamilton
Series: Forever Girl #1
Publisher: TeZLA Publishing
Published on: December 21, 2013
Genre: New Adult, Paranormal Romance
Format: 263 pages, eBook
Provided by: Purchased
Amazon | B&N | Book Depo | GoodReads


A Cult. A Murder. A Curse.

At twenty-two, practicing Wiccan Sophia Parsons is scratching out a living waiting tables in her Rocky Mountain hometown, a pariah after a string of unsolved murders with only one thing in common: her.

Sophia can imagine lots of ways to improve her life, but she'd settle for just getting rid of the buzzing noise in her head. When the spell she casts goes wrong, the static turns into voices. Her personal demons get company, and the newcomers are dangerous.

One of them is a man named Charles, who Sophia falls for despite her better judgment. He has connections that might help her unveil the mystery surrounding her ancestor's hanging, but she gets more than she bargains for when she finally decides to trust him.

The Forever Girl is a full-length Paranormal Fantasy novel that will appeal to lovers of paranormal romance, urban fantasy, witches, vampires, ghosts, paranormal mystery, and paranormal horror.

Every once in awhile I will read a book and know immediately that I am going to love it. That’s what happened with this book. I found it on sale, it sat in my tbr pile for only a little over a month, and I could barely put it down once I started.

“My mom died during an exorcism on my eighteenth birthday.” That’s how the book started, and I was hooked. No exorcisms to be had in this book though-thankfully. Witches, vampires, shifters, weird(as in really weird)children, this book has some really interesting characters, to say the least. The main one being, Sophia, a small town girl, in an unforgiving small town. Since Sophia is different, practices Wicca religion, and seems to be around when some people die, she is therefore the pariah of the town. One night a good friend of her’s, Ivory, takes her to a very secret nightclub. This night changes her life forever, and causes her to meet Charles. Charles is seriously swoon worthy, and their relationship reminds me a bit of Edward and Bella, from Twilight. You know, human girl, very protective, supernatural guy. Only these aren’t teenagers, and Charles, isn’t exactly a vampire.

This ended up being a pretty complicated read. There’s actually a story within the story, and at one point the reader is even transported back to the 1600’s, and the time of the Salem Witch Trials, and I am not talking about time travel. Things that happen in the past, absolutely can effect things in the future, at least they do in this story. Sophia starts out as a pretty simple human twenty something year old woman, who grows so much during this story. She is certainly completely different at the end. A complex character, one that goes through hell, and comes out the other side the better for it. Charles was complex from the beginning, and a bit of an enigma for a part of the book. But even he grows and changes in this story as well.

Ms. Hamilton has written a story, although similar to Twilight in some aspects, is completely different as well. I found this read to be pretty fascinating, and really well done by the author. She takes a human girl, and supernatural guy, and spins a story about them into a complicated premise, rife with a myriad of strange characters and occurrences. New takes on vampires, shifters, witches, and other entities as well, all made for an almost non stop read for me. World building for days. No love triangle or cliffhangers either!

When I finished the book, I immediately went to buy the second book as I thought the story continued with Sophia and Charles. I was wrong, the author has continued the series with another main character that was not in this book. It does however, take place in the same world. I am on the fence about if I am going to read the next book now, although there are lots of 5 star reviews for it out there-as there are for this one.

A lot of you may have already read this one, but if you haven’t, I highly recommend this to adult paranormal romance/urban fantasy readers; it really is a different kind of read in a genre that seems to do the same things, over and over at times.

Lorna Signature

Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/review-the-forever-girl-by-rebecca-hamilton.html

Fresh Meat: February 22-28th Speculative Fiction Releases

Paranormal Romance:

Fury of Obsession
Fury of Obsession (Dragonfury #5)
by Coreene Callahan
Paranormal Romance
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Dragon-warrior Venom lives in self-imposed isolation. Cursed by his toxic touch, he is deadly to anyone who has contact with him for too long. Set apart from others and hounded by intense loneliness, he craves the lasting connection he believes he cannot possess. Until a chance encounter with a sultry mortal offers a ray of hope…

Evelyn Foxe is the woman of Venom’s every desire, but she’s too busy running from the Russian mob to think about love. As she accepts Venom’s offer to help her escape her precarious situation, she’s skeptical, afraid that he’s in league with those sent to harm her. But when a biological weapon is unleashed in her hometown, Evelyn is forced to trust Venom—or risk the dangers of going it alone.

Will they survive the firestorm that rages around them? And can they pull from the ashes a love that will defy all the odds and last through the ages?


Soulbound (Darkest London #6)
by Kristen Callihan
Paranormal Romance / Steampunk
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Once two souls are joined . . .
When Adam’s soul mate rejected him, there was more at stake than his heart. After seven hundred years of searching, his true match would have ended the curse that keeps his spirit in chains. But beautiful, stubborn Eliza May fled-and now Adam is doomed to an eternity of anguish, his only hope for salvation gone . . .

Their hearts will beat together forever
No matter how devilishly irresistible Adam was, Eliza couldn’t stand the thought of relinquishing her freedom forever. So she escaped. But she soon discovers she is being hunted-by someone far more dangerous. The only man who can help is the one man she vowed never to see again. Now Adam’s kindness is an unexpected refuge, and Eliza finds that some vows are made to be broken . . .


Cursed by Fire (Immortal Brothers #1)
by Jacquelyn Frank
Paranormal Romance
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

For centuries, Dethan has been trapped in a fiery inferno for defying the gods and snatching the power of immortality. Condemned to have his battle-hardened body licked by flames only to regenerate and be consumed all over again, Dethan has lost all hope—until the Goddess of Conflict appears. She will release him from torment—if he’ll use his power and strength as a warrior to raise an army and defeat a fierce enemy faction of gods.

Free to live as a man once again, Dethan meets Selinda—heir to the throne of Hexis—and his thoughts quickly turn from the conquest of cities to the conquest of this headstrong beauty. Betrothed to a cruel, calculating powermonger, Selinda needs a champion, and so Dethan enters into another bargain: If she will share her bed—and her body—with him, Dethan will save her city from destructive forces within and without. As the lovers ignite a searing passion, Dethan will risk all—even the wrath of the Goddess of Conflict—for a chance to make Selinda his forever.


The Immortal Who Loved Me
(Argeneau #21)
by Lynsay Sands
Paranormal Romance
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

A few hours ago, Sherry Carne would have sworn that vampires didn’t exist. That’s before rogue immortals rampage through her store, leaving bloody chaos (literally) in their wake. The kicker comes when Sherry learns that one of the vamps on the bad guys’ trail may be her life mate. Her head says it’s impossible. The rest of her takes one look at Basileios Argeneau and has much more interesting ideas.

Whatever Basil expected in a life mate, funny, outspoken Sherry isn’t it. But mind-blowing chemistry and instinct don’t lie. They tell him something else, too—that Sherry’s connection to the immortal world goes deeper than she knows. And that she’s in the kind of danger only Basil can save her from—if she’ll just trust him, now and forever . . .


Angel/Hiss (Bayou Heat #13-14)
by Alexandra Ivy & Laura Wright
Paranormal Romance
Amazon GoodReads

Book Description

The latest book in the Bayou Heat saga is filled with suspense and searing-hot passion as a mysterious enemy stalks the Pantera, threatening to destroy them unless they discover who is hunting them and bring a halt to the ultimate evil.


When Irish Eyes Are Haunting
(Krewe of Hunters #14.5)
by Heather Graham
Paranormal Romance
Amazon GoodReads

Book Description

Devin Lyle and Craig Rockwell are back, this time to a haunted castle in Ireland where a banshee may have gone wild —– or maybe there’s a much more rational explanation —– one that involves a disgruntled heir, murder, and mayhem, all with that sexy light touch Heather Graham has turned into her trademark style.


A Ghostly Undertaking
(Ghostly Southern Mysteries #1)
by Tonya Kappes
Paranormal / Cozy Mystery
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

A funeral, a ghost, a murder . . . It’s all in a day’s work for emma lee raines . . .

Bopped on the head from a falling plastic Santa, local undertaker Emma Lee Raines is told she’s suffering from “funeral trauma.” It’s trauma all right, because the not-so-dearly departed keep talking to her. Take Ruthie Sue Payne—innkeeper, gossip queen, and arch-nemesis of Emma Lee’s granny—she’s adamant that she didn’t just fall down those stairs. She was pushed.

Ruthie has no idea who wanted her pushing up daisies. All she knows is that she can’t cross over until the matter is laid to eternal rest. In the land of the living, Emma Lee’s high-school crush, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, isn’t ready to rule out foul play. Granny Raines, the widow of Ruthie’s ex-husband and co-owner of the Sleepy Hollow Inn, is the prime suspect. Now Emma Lee is stuck playing detective or risk being haunted forever.

Urban Fantasy:

Grave Matters (Night Owls #2)
by Lauren M. Roy
Urban Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Night Owls bookstore always keeps a light on and evil creatures out. But, as Lauren M. Roy’s thrilling sequel continues, even its supernatural staff isn’t prepared for the dead to come back to life…

Elly grew up training to kill things that go bump in the night, so she’s still getting used to working alongside them. While she’s learned to trust the eclectic group of vampires, Renfields, and succubi at Night Owls bookstore, her new job guarding Boston’s most powerful vampire has her on edge—especially when she realizes something strange is going on with her employer, something even deadlier than usual…

Cavale isn’t thrilled that his sister works for vampires, but he’s determined to repair their relationship, and that means trusting her choices—until Elly’s job lands all of the Night Owls in deep trouble with a vengeful necromancer. And even their collective paranormal skills might not be enough to keep them from becoming part of the necromancer’s undead army…


Armageddon Rules (Grimm Agency #2)
by J.C. Nelson
Urban Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Marissa Locks, newly appointed partner of the Grimm Agency, has a reputation for making a mess of magical matters—although causing Armageddon is a new low, even for her…

Marissa is due for a little happily ever after. After all, she did kill the evil Fairy Godmother, end a war, and snag a sweet promotion within the Fairy Godfather’s magical-problem-solving Agency. But between maintaining a relationship with someone whose amorous advances can cause third-degree burns, dealing with a killer-poodle infestation, and helping her best friend, Princess Ari, learn to wield spells more powerful than curing a hangover, she’s not getting as much peace and quiet as she hoped.

When an enemy from her past appears to exact a terrible revenge, Marissa’s life goes from hectic to hell on earth. With Grimm inexplicably gone and Ari trapped by a sleeping spell, Marissa decides to fight fire with hellfire—and accidentally begins a countdown to the apocalypse.

With the end of days extremely nigh, Marissa will have to master royal politics, demonic law, and biblical plagues in a hurry—because even the end of the world can’t keep the Agency from opening for business…


Of Shadow and Stone
by Michelle Muto
Urban Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Gargoyles were created centuries ago to protect mankind, but something went horribly wrong. Now only the sentinel—a mortal chosen to control the stone beasts—stands between them and their human prey.

When the latest sentinel is killed, Kate Mercer is destined to take his place. But Kate has enough going on in her life—like a skyrocketing film career, a delusional ex-boyfriend, and a crazed stalker who will stop at nothing to get to her. But the powers that be have decided, and Kate is transported to Shadow Wood, a mysterious castle that serves as a sanctuary for the supernatural. Although beautiful, Shadow Wood is no safe place for a mere mortal. Yet Kate is drawn not only to the gargoyles but also to Ian McGuire, a charming novelist who might be in the greatest danger of all.

As Kate decides whether to accept the most perilous role of her life, she discovers there are more secrets than answers within the castle’s walls. Her survival and Ian’s depend on her ability to master the gargoyles before time runs out. Is fate really cast in stone?

Science Fiction / Fantasy:

The Black Wolves
The Black Wolves (The Black Wolves #1)
by Kate Elliott
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description


He lost his honor long ago.

Captain Kellas was lauded as the king’s most faithful servant until the day he failed in his duty. Dismissed from service, his elite regiment disbanded, he left the royal palace and took up another life.

Now a battle brews within the palace that threatens to reveal deadly secrets and spill over into open war. The king needs a loyal soldier to protect him.

Can a disgraced man ever be trusted?


Demon Child (Celestial Battle #2)
by Kylie Chan
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

War with Hell looms and the cruel demons could gain control of everything. Emma Donahoe has faced down threats to her loved ones and never given up the fight. But as the demons close in, she faces a new danger—John’s love for her could lead to her complete annihilation. As battles rage for control of Heaven and Earth, Emma must fight her own war to retain her identity as it disintegrates into the man she loves . . .

New / Young Adult:

Lion's Share
Lion’s Share (Wildcats #1)
by Rachel Vincent
New Adult
Amazon GoodReads

Book Description

Abby Wade has a dangerous secret.

Two months ago, she disobeyed an order, but instead of kicking her out of the Pride, Jace offered her a job. Since then, she’s been battling a completely inappropriate crush on the young, hot Alpha. But when accepting his job offer seems like the only way to keep her skeletons safely in their closet, Abby doesn’t hesitate.

Jace Hammond has a big problem.

A rogue is slaughtering humans in his territory, and he must eliminate the threat before the entire shifter species is exposed. There could not be a worse time for Abby to accept a job he only offered as a boost to her confidence. Abby is smart, beautiful, and resilient—more than enough to distract any man from the mission. Unfortunately, she may just be the worst enforcer ever to hold the title.

As they hunt the killer, Abby’s secret becomes a threat to Jace’s authority and to her own life. But the real danger is the grip she has on his twice-shy heart.


Unchanged (Unremembered #3)
by Jessica Brody
Young Adult / Science Fiction
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

So many secrets are buried within these compound walls.

I used to be one of those secrets.

After returning to the Diotech compound and undergoing an experimental new memory alteration, Seraphina is now a loyal, obedient servant to Dr. Alixter and the powerful company that created her. Happy and in love with Kaelen, another scientifically-enhanced human designed to be her perfect match, Sera’s history with a boy named Zen is just a distant memory from a rebellious past she longs to forget.

But as Sera and Kaelen embark on a nationwide tour to promote Diotech’s new product line—a collection of controversial genetic modifications available to the public—Sera’s mind starts to rebel. She can’t stop the memories of Zen from creeping back in.

As more secrets are revealed, more enemies are uncovered, and the reality of a Diotech-controlled world grows closer every day, Sera will have to choose where her true loyalties lie, but it’s a choice that may cost her everything she’s ever loved.


Stone in the Sky (Tin Star #2)
by Cecil Castellucci
Young Adult / Science Fiction
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Brother Blue.
His name, even the color, filled me with a furious fire of pure hatred.

<BR/ > Years ago, Tula Bane was beaten and left for dead on a remote space station far from Earth, her home planet. She started with nothing and had no one, but over time, she found a home, a family, and even love. When it’s discovered that the abandoned planet beneath the station is abundant with a rare and valuable resource, aliens from across the galaxy race over to strike it rich. With them comes trouble, like the man who nearly killed Tula years ago—the man she has dreamed of destroying ever since.


Kalahari (Corpus #3)
by Jessica Khoury
Young Adult / Science Fiction
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Deep in the Kalahari Desert, a Corpus lab protects a dangerous secret…
But what happens when that secret takes on a life of its own?

When an educational safari goes wrong, five teens find themselves stranded in the Kalahari Desert without a guide. It’s up to Sarah, the daughter of zoologists, to keep them alive and lead them to safety, calling on survival know-how from years of growing up in remote and exotic locales. Battling dehydration, starvation and the pangs of first love, she does her best to hold it together, even as their circumstances grow increasingly desperate.

But soon a terrifying encounter makes Sarah question everything she’s ever known about the natural world. A silver lion, as though made of mercury, makes a vicious, unprovoked attack on the group. After a narrow escape, they uncover the chilling truth behind the lion’s silver sheen: a highly contagious and deadly virus that threatens to ravage the entire area—and eliminate life as they know it.

In this breathtaking new novel by the acclaimed author of Origin and Vitro, Sarah and the others must not only outrun the virus, but its creators, who will stop at nothing to wipe every trace of it. her future. But the brothers are cursed to be swans by day. Can Friday’s unique magic somehow break the spell?


The Recovery (The Program #2.5)
by Suzanne Young
Young Adult / Science Fiction
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Six months after the fall of The Program, ex-handler Michael Realm is struggling with his guilt. After all, he was instrumental in erasing the memories of several patients—including one he claimed to love. With a lifetime of regret stretched before him, Realm vows to set things right.

Along with his friend (yes, friend) James Murphy, Realm will track down those he’s hurt in an attempt to give them back their lives—starting with Dallas Stone. He’s not looking for forgiveness or redemption; he’s not a hero. But helping others may be the only way to save himself.


Dove Arising (Dove Chronicles #1)
by Karen Bao
Young Adult / Science Fiction
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Phaet Theta has lived her whole life in a colony on the Moon. She’s barely spoken since her father died in an accident nine years ago. She cultivates the plants in Greenhouse 22, lets her best friend talk for her, and stays off the government’s radar.

Then her mother is arrested.

The only way to save her younger siblings from the degrading Shelter is by enlisting in the Militia, the faceless army that polices the Lunar bases and protects them from attacks by desperate Earth-dwellers. Training is brutal, but it’s where Phaet forms an uneasy but meaningful alliance with the preternaturally accomplished Wes, a fellow outsider.

Rank high, save her siblings, free her mom: that’s the plan. Until Phaet’s logically ordered world begins to crumble…


When My Heart Was Wicked
by Tricia Stirling
Young Adult / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

“I used to be one of those girls. The kind who loved to deliver bad news. When I colored my hair, I imagined it seeping into my scalp, black dye pooling into my veins.

But that was the old Lacy. Now, when I cast spells, they are always for good.”

16-year-old Lacy believes that magic and science can work side by side. She’s a botanist who knows how to harness the healing power of plants. So when her father dies, Lacy tries to stay with her step-mother in Chico, where her magic is good and healing. She fears the darkness that her real mother, Cheyenne, brings out, stripping away everything that is light and kind.

Yet Cheyenne never stays away for long. Beautiful, bewitching, unstable Cheyenne who will stop at nothing, not even black magic, to keep control of her daughter’s heart. She forces Lacy to accompany her to Sacramento, and before long, the “old” Lacy starts to resurface.

But when Lacy survives a traumatic encounter, she finds herself faced with a choice. Will she use her powers to exact revenge and spiral into the darkness forever? Or will she find the strength to embrace the light?


by Kit Alloway
Young Adult / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Unlike most 17-year-olds, Joshlyn Weaver has a sacred duty. She’s the celebrated daughter of the dream walkers, a secret society whose members enter the Dream universe we all share and battle nightmares. If they fail, the emotional turmoil in the Dream could boil over and release nightmares into the World.

Despite Josh’s reputation as a dream walking prodigy, she’s haunted by her mistakes. A lapse in judgment and the death of someone she loved have shaken her confidence. Now she’s been assigned an apprentice, a boy whose steady gaze sees right through her, and she’s almost as afraid of getting close to him as she is of getting him killed.

But when strangers with impossible powers begin appearing in the Dream, it isn’t just Will that Josh has to protect–it’s the whole World.


The Sin Eater’s Daughter
(The Sin Eater’s Daughter #1)
by Melinda Salisbury
Young Adult / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Seventeen-year-old Twylla lives in the castle. But although she’s engaged to the prince, Twylla isn’t exactly a member of the court.

She’s the executioner.

As the Goddess embodied, Twylla instantly kills anyone she touches. Each month, she’s taken to the prison and forced to lay her hands on those accused of treason. No one will ever love a girl with murder in her veins. Even the prince, whose royal blood supposedly makes him immune to Twylla’s fatal touch, avoids her company.

But then a new guard arrives, a boy whose easy smile belies his deadly swordsmanship. And unlike the others, he’s able to look past Twylla’s executioner robes and see the girl, not the Goddess. Yet Twylla’s been promised to the prince, and knows what happens to people who cross the queen.

However, a treasonous secret is the least of Twylla’s problems. The queen has a plan to destroy her enemies, a plan that requires a stomach-churning, unthinkable sacrifice. Will Twylla do what it takes to protect her kingdom? Or will she abandon her duty in favor of a doomed love?


A Darker Shade of Magic
(A Darker Shade of Magic #1)
by V.E. Schwab
Young Adult / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Kell is one of the last Travelers—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel universes—as such, he can choose where he lands.

There’s Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, ruled by a mad King George. Then there’s Red London, where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London, ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne—a place where people fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. And once upon a time, there was Black London…but no one speaks of that now.Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see—a dangerous hobby, and one that has set him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations, first robs him, then saves him from a dangerous enemy, and then forces him to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive—and that is proving trickier than they hoped.


Shadow Study (Soulfinders #1)
by Maria V. Snyder
Young Adult / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Once, only her own life hung in the balance…

Oddly enough, when Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. But she’d survived to become a vital part of the balance of power between rival countries Ixia and Sitia. Now she uses her magic to keep the peace in both lands—and protect her relationship with Valek.

Suddenly, though, they are beset on all sides by those vying for power through politics and intrigue. Valek’s job and his life are in danger. As Yelena tries to uncover the scope of these plots, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked. She must keep that a secret—or her enemies will discover just how vulnerable she really is—while searching for who or what is responsible for neutralizing her powers.

Yes, the days of tasting poisons were much simpler. And certainly not as dangerous…


A Wicked Thing (A Wicked Thing #1)
by Rhiannon Thomas
Young Adult / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

One hundred years after falling asleep, Princess Aurora wakes up to the kiss of a handsome prince and a broken kingdom that has been dreaming of her return. All the books say that she should be living happily ever after. But as Aurora understands all too well, the truth is nothing like the fairy tale.

Her family is long dead. Her “true love” is a kind stranger. And her whole life has been planned out by political foes while she slept.

As Aurora struggles to make sense of her new world, she begins to fear that the curse has left its mark on her, a fiery and dangerous thing that might be as wicked as the witch who once ensnared her. With her wedding day drawing near, Aurora must make the ultimate decision on how to save her kingdom: marry the prince or run.


(Whispers from Mirrowen #3)
by Jeff Wheeler
Young Adult / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

The battle to save the kingdoms devastated by the Plague culminates in this exhilarating finale to the Whispers from Mirrowen trilogy.

If there is anything more dangerous than the Plague itself, it is the journey that awaits those sworn to stop it. Tyrus, the renegade magic-wielder exiled from Kenatos, knows this firsthand. His original mission through the Scourgelands met a tragic end, leaving him as the sole survivor.

Now all hope lies with his daughter, Phae, the uniquely gifted Dryad-born who can not only steal memories but also summon the power of the fireblood—and who alone has the power to breach the lost gate of Mirrowen. But first Phae and the comrades who have come to her aid must survive the most dangerous place on earth: the Scourgelands.

The menacing woods prove every bit as treacherous as reputed. Murder, sacrifice, deception, and an epic battle with a beast ensue. Will Phae reach the land beyond the grasp of the deadly Plague…or will the quest through the Scourgelands end in tragedy once again?


Unleashed (Uninvited #2)
by Sophie Jordan
Young Adult / Dystopian
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Davy has spent the last few months trying to come to terms with the fact that she tested positive for the kill gene HTS (also known as Homicidal Tendency Syndrome). She swore she would not let it change her, and that her DNA did not define her . . . but then she killed a man.

Now on the run, Davy must decide whether she’ll be ruled by the kill gene or if she’ll follow her heart and fight for her right to live free. But with her own potential for violence lying right beneath the surface, Davy doesn’t even know if she can trust herself.


Quake (Pulse #3)
by Patrick Carman
Young Adult / Dystopian
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Faith Daniels and Dylan Gilmore have a special ability called a pulse: they can move things with their minds. They’re caught in the middle of a deadly war with two other pulses: Clara and Wade Quinn, who have joined forces with Hotspur Chance, the most wanted man in the world. Outnumbered, it will take more than Faith’s and Dylan’s pulses to save them—it will take a miracle.

But this isn’t just about the States anymore; it is about finishing what they started. In a series of hair-raising battles, they discover an even greater strength: the power of their combined love. Together, Faith and Dylan might just be able to save the world with a quake that is big enough to change the course of history.


Salt & Stone (Fire & Flood #2)
by Victoria Scott
Young Adult / Dystopian
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

How far would you go to survive?

In FIRE & FLOOD, Tella Holloway faced a dangerous trek through the jungle and a terrifying march across the desert, all to remain a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed for a chance at obtaining the Cure for her brother. She can’t stop – and in SALT & STONE, Tella will have to face the unseen dangers of the ocean, the breathless cold of a mountain, and twisted new rules in the race.

But what if the danger is deeper than that? How do you know who to trust when everyone’s keeping secrets? What do you do when the person you’d relied on most suddenly isn’t there for support? How do you weigh one life against another?

The race is coming to an end, and Tella is running out of time, resources, and strength. At the beginning of the race there were one hundred twenty-two Contenders. As Tella and her remaining friends start the fourth and final part of the race, just forty-one are left . . . and only one can win.

Victoria Scott’s stunning thriller will leave readers’ hearts racing!


Haunted (The Arnaud Legacy #1)
by Lynn Carthage
Young Adult
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Sixteen-year-old Phoebe Irving has traded life in San Francisco for her stepfather’s ancestral mansion in rural England. It’s supposed to be the new start her family needs. But from the moment she crosses the threshold into the ancient estate, Phoebe senses something ominous. Then again, she’s a little sensitive lately—not surprising when her parents are oblivious to her, her old life is six thousand miles away, and the only guy around is completely gorgeous but giving her mixed messages.

But at least Miles doesn’t laugh at Phoebe’s growing fears. And she can trust him…maybe. The locals whisper about the manor’s infamous original owner, Madame Arnaud, and tell grim stories of missing children and vengeful spirits. Phoebe is determined to protect her loved ones—especially her little sister, Tabby. But even amidst the manor’s dark shadows, the deepest mysteries may involve Phoebe herself…


Feral Pride (Feral #3)
by Cynthia Leitich Smith
Young Adult
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

Anti-shifter sentiment is at an all-time high when Kayla’s transformation to werecat is captured on video and uploaded for the world to see. Suddenly she becomes a symbol of the werebeast threat and—along with fellow cat Yoshi, lion-possum Clyde, and human Aimee—a hunted fugitive. Meanwhile, a self-proclaimed weresnake has kidnapped the governor of Texas and hit the airwaves with a message of war. In retaliation, werepeople are targeted by law enforcement, threatened with a shift-suppressing vaccine, terrorized by corporate conspiracy, and enslaved by a top-secret, intelligent Cryptid species. Can Clyde rally his inner lion king to lead his friends—new and old—into battle against ruthless, media-savvy foes? A rousing blend of suspense, paranormal romance, humor, and high action.


Soul Crossed (Of Demons and Angels #1)
by Lisa Gail Green
Young Adult
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

One Demon.

One Angel.

One Soul.

Josh lived a reckless, selfish life, so upon his death, escaping the eternal torments of Hell by assuming the role of a powerful, soul-corrupting demon is an easy choice. His first soul assignment doesn’t seem too hard: the mortal Camden is already obsessed with weapons, pain, and torture. If only Josh wasn’t distracted by Cam’s beautiful friend, Grace.

Grace never expected to die violently at age sixteen, but now she’s an Angel, responsible for saving a soul. She can already see past Camden’s earthly flaws, so the job should be be easy. If only that handsome, playboy Josh would stop getting in the way.

It’s forbidden for an Angel to be with a Demon, so if Josh and Grace stop resisting each other, the results would be disastrous.

And only one can claim Cam’s soul.


Mark of the Thief (Mark of the Thief #1)
by Jennifer A. Nielsen
Middle Grade / Fantasy
Amazon B&N GoodReads

Book Description

When Nic, a slave in the mines outside of Rome, is forced to enter a sealed cavern containing the lost treasures of Julius Caesar, he finds much more than gold and gemstones: He discovers an ancient bulla, an amulet that belonged to the great Caesar and is filled with a magic once reserved for the Gods — magic some Romans would kill for.

Now, with the deadly power of the bulla pulsing through his veins, Nic is determined to become free. But instead, he finds himself at the center of a ruthless conspiracy to overthrow the emperor and spark the Praetor War, a battle to destroy Rome from within. Traitors and spies lurk at every turn, each more desperate than the next to use Nic’s newfound powers for their own dark purposes.

In a quest to stop the rebellion, save Rome, and secure his own freedom, Nic must harness the magic within himself and defeat the empire’s most powerful and savage leaders.

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Carmel Signature

Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/fresh-meat-february-22-28th-speculative-fiction-releases.html

Reading progress update: I've read 27%.

Lion's Share (Wildcats Book 1) - Rachel Vincent

Way to fall for yet another unavailable woman, Jace. You sure know how to pick 'em!

Review: Hunt by Rachel Vincent

Hunt: A Shifters Short Story - Rachel Vincent

I was psyched to be back in the SHIFTERS universe after such a prolonged break. I didn't remember much about Abby's character, but the Faythe & Jace bits were like getting a hug from an old friend. The protagonist's emotion fueled responses to a threatening situation led to some rash decisions which left me screaming at my eReader. Yes, Rachel Vincent managed to get <i>that</i> kind of reaction out of me in only 30-ish pages! I kept expecting Wade to be like Miss Sanders; however it took Faythe five books to become the beloved heroine that she is today, so I'm more than willing to keep an open mind with regards to her potential as the lead in the first installment of this author's WILDCATS spin-off series. This short was nearly perfect, and for a novella that's saying something! 

Early Review, Excerpt and Giveaway: Soulbound by Kristen Callihan


I’m delighted to be launching Kristen Callihan’s SOULBOUND blog tour today with an excerpt, review, and giveaway. The DARKEST LONDON series is one of my f-a-v-o-u-r-i-t-e Paranormal Romance addictions of all times, so if you haven’t snagged a copy of FIRELIGHT yet, I strongly urge you to do so. Read on to find out why:


               Eliza sat back on her heels, while Adam merely stared at her as though he had all the time in the world. “Fine,” she said. “Three weeks. I free you and you help me.” She gave him a warning look. “I’ll need your word that you will help me, that this” she waved her hand between them, “isn’t merely a way to trick me into freeing you.”
               “This business was your idea, woman,” he said with affront.
               “Nevertheless, I’ll need your word.”
               The demon’s nostrils flared with a sharp exhalation. “My word then.” Eliza did not look away from him, and he glared back in obvious exasperation. “What now?”
               “I’m merely considering if I ought to trust your word,” she said.
               A low growl rumbled in his chest as he bared his teeth. “I keep my word, whether I want to or not. My word is my bond. Honor, Miss May. Unlike you, I have it.”
               “How dare you—”
               “How dare you?” He craned forward, the muscles along his shoulders bunching. “Not so long ago you broke your promise of fealty. To me!”
               “Oh, yes, how quick you are to remind me.” Eliza leaned close, grinding her teeth to keep in a shout. “You enjoy being quick, don’t you?”
His thick, dark brows furrowed. “What in the bloody blazes are you talking about?”
               “You gave me all of ten seconds to make a choice.” Eliza’s fists ached from clenching them. “And what a choice. I was dead, my body sliced open, my blood on the ground. I would have done anything, anything,” she thumped her fist to her chest, “to get back my life.”
               “So that makes it better?” he snapped back in outrage. “Desperation gives you leave to go back on your word?”
               “No. That is not what I meant.”
               “Then you agree that you bloody well have no honor—”
               “You never explained what was involved. You never said I’d be chained to you, like some animal, for the rest of my days,” Eliza shouted. “I was told I would be a GIM. I was ready to serve you in that manner. You knew full well that’s what I believed. If anything, you swindled me!”
    nbsp;           All at once, he sagged, though he still eyed her with resentment and distaste. Well, she had a healthy helping of those feelings for him too.
               “Tick, tock, Eliza,” she mimicked. “You rushed me because you didn’t want me to think things over.”
               When he broke eye contact, his hard jaw twitched.
               “I’m correct, aren’t I?” Ire and a red rage surged up within her. “And you have the brass to sit on your high horse and talk of honor. Well let me tell you something, demon. There is little honor in forcing a person’s hand. Or using your power to coerce those weaker than you.”
               A black scowl twisted the demon’s face as he glared at some distant point. “Fine. May I continue, or have you more complaints to heap upon my head?”
               “Please do continue,” Eliza granted.
               His golden gaze flicked back to her. “I want to kiss you.”
               “No.” The word burst out of her with force. “Absolutely not.”
               Unfazed, Adam shrugged. “Unless you have something to offer in exchange for your freedom, Mellan and Mab will, as you say, merely hunt us down, and you’ll be back to where you started.”
               “Then I shall find out what he wants.” Eliza straightened her back. She could do that. She must. Like hell was she going to kiss this demon.
               Adam simply gave her a slow, wicked half-smile. “Fortunately for you, lass, I already know what he wants. What they both want. More than controlling you. More than torturing me, even.”
               “Then why in blazes haven’t you used it to secure your own freedom?” Eliza blurted out.
               “I’m only alive because they cannot break me into revealing where this item might be.” The belligerence burning in his eyes was gone in a blink, replaced by a look of pure cunning. “However, I might be persuaded to help you use the knowledge. All I require is— ”
               “Fine,” she snapped, irritation getting the best of her. “I’ll kiss you.”
               Silence fell, and Adam stared at her with those eyes of his. Devil’s eyes. Eyes that made a woman forget herself. Heat rose up over her breasts and crawled along the back of her neck. Eliza grasped her skirts, her fingers twitching. She would kiss him. Kiss a man who had brought her nothing but irritation. Maybe she’d bite him to boot.
               His chest, gleaming with sweat, rose and fell in a soft pattern. A bead of perspiration broke free from the top of his shoulder and ran down along the firm rise of his pectoral muscles, straight toward the dark nub of his nipple. All this time arguing with him, she’d forgotten his state of undress. Not so now. She’d have to press up against those hard muscles, touch his skin. Eliza wrenched her gaze back to his face, and his sinful lips curled in a knowing smile.
“You know,” he said casually, “I believe I shall pass for the moment. I’d rather it be when you aren’t wearing such a sour face. Kills a bloke’s ardor, you realize.”
               Eliza blinked. And then his meaning hit her. “Why you…rutting…cheap, trickster…”
               He laughed, a flash of even teeth. “Come now, Eliza, fret not.” He stopped then, that obnoxious smile growing and heating with promise. “I’ll take that kiss soon enough. ”
               She rose to her feet in a rustle of skirts. “And I’ll be sure to bite that wicked tongue when you do!”
               She marched out of the cell, slamming it behind her, as he began to laugh again. Bastard. She might just leave him here to rot after all. His laughing taunt echoed through the dark. “Now that I know tongues are involved, I’ll be sure to collect.”


Author Bio

Kristen Callihan is an author because there is nothing else she’d rather be. She is a three-time RITA nominee and winner of two RT Reviewers’ Choice awards. Her novels have garnered starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Library Journal, as well as being awarded top picks by many reviewers. Her debut book, Firelight, received RT Book Reviews’ Seal of Excellence, was named a best book of the year by Library Journal, best book of Spring 2012 by Publisher’s Weekly, and was named the best romance book of 2012 by ALA RUSA. When she is not writing, she is reading.

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My Review

Early Review, Excerpt and Giveaway: Soulbound by Kristen Callihan
Author: Kristen Callihan
Series: Darkest London #6
Publisher: Forever
Published on: February 24, 2015
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Steampunk
Format: 432 pages, eARC
Provided by: Publisher

Once two souls are joined . . .

When Adam's soul mate rejected him, there was more at stake than his heart. After seven hundred years of searching, his true match would have ended the curse that keeps his spirit in chains. But beautiful, stubborn Eliza May fled-and now Adam is doomed to an eternity of anguish, his only hope for salvation gone . . .

Their hearts will beat together forever

No matter how devilishly irresistible Adam was, Eliza couldn't stand the thought of relinquishing her freedom forever. So she escaped. But she soon discovers she is being hunted-by someone far more dangerous. The only man who can help is the one man she vowed never to see again. Now Adam's kindness is an unexpected refuge, and Eliza finds that some vows are made to be broken . . .

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Kristen Callihan has been 5-for-5 with her DARKEST LONDON series, and I’ve been looking forward to Adam’s story most of all, so when the mailman delivered SOULBOUND the pressure was on. This installment brought with it plenty of new revelations with regards to the Fae, the King of the GIM’s curse, and we finally discover what was plaguing Archer in FIRELIGHT. The writing was as strong as ever, and the author made me weep with her romantic elements, but this book had a degree of predictability to it that the others didn’t which is why Callihan’s perfect rating streak must end here.

This world is peppered with paranormal excellence from the mythology to the plethora of otherworldly characters; however only the Ghosts In The Machine have captured my interest to the point of obsession. Spooks are common enough in this genre, but this author’s approach is exceptional, bar none. Adam’s nature has been one of this series’ most closely guarded secrets, and is so intricately linked to the Fae that an examination of one will spoil the other, and both get cracked wide open in this novel, thus expect a deluge of answers, just not from me. Ha!

As astounding as all of this book’s epiphanies were, they paled in comparison to the atypical conclusion. Callihan didn’t simply choose the path less traveled, she forged her own, and in doing so completely changed the definition of happily-ever-after. A common complaint of mine where ghost romances are concerned is that there aren’t any easy solutions to unite the couple, and the obvious fix is the one that no reader wants to face. I loved the direction that Adam & Eliza’s story took, although it was partially to blame for this installment’s foreseeable chain of events.

Two of DARKEST LONDON’s previously featured heroines are GIM, so a coup on their King meant that this novel’s plot arc was widespread which had its benefits because the better part of this series’ characters got a word or two in. The mystery behind book 1 was solved at long last, and will in all probability carry over to the next title if Sin has anything to do with it, although I wouldn’t mind terribly if Lucien’s tale took precedence, especially after his recent admission. I guess the point I’m trying to make is that wherever this author goes from here, I will follow.

SOULBOUND will make you believe in the impossible, there is love after death.

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Source: http://rabidreads.ca/2015/02/early-review-excerpt-and-giveaway-soulbound-by-kristen-callihan.html

Reading progress update: I've read 100%.

Crimson Bound - Rosamund Hodge

This wasn't quite the story I'd expected when I dove in with a Red Riding Hood re-telling mindset. The world, writing, and twists were creative, but the love triangle and Big Bad Wolf left something to be desired. Full review to follow. ~ 3.5 stars

Reading progress update: I've read 84%.

Crimson Bound - Rosamund Hodge