Review: Marked by Kit Rocha, Vivian Arend, and Lauren Dane

markedReviewed by Carrie

Ooooh lord, this anthology might set your e-reader (and panties) on fire!  I’ve said before that I don’t care for novellas, but some of my favorite authors have been cranking out some great ones!  Let’s break it down.

Beyond Temptation
by Kit Rocha (Grade: B)

This is set in the dystopian world of Sector Four.  It works ok as a standalone if you haven’t read the other books, but you really should because they are that good.  For everyone else, welcome back to the O’Kane gang.  The last Noah saw little Emmaline was when he and her brother dropped her off at a safe house.  Noah is shocked to see his best friend’s little sister in Sector Four with O’Kane ink.  Emma has finally got the man she’s always had a tender heart for in her world.  As Noah struggles with the guilt of Emma’s brother’s death and leaving her all alone, Emma tries to make him see her as an O’Kane woman able to kick ass.  Because of the short nature of the novella, the sexual tension that is apparent isn’t as drawn out as I might like.  The sex is a bit tame for O’Kane standards – there’s only m/f but is still super hot.  There are some hints and insights into the plot moving forward – I’m excited to see what else Noelle can do!  All this is leading up to Ace/Rachel/Cruz’s book publishing on March 17th.

Rocky Ride
by Vivian Arend (Grade: B+)

This novella is a spin-off of Arend’s popular Six Pack Ranch series.  You do not have to have read the others to enjoy.  The story starts off with a rougeish biker, Mitch, being pulled over by the local cop Anna only to find out that they have been playing this sort of “game” for a while.  Why don’t we do it in the road, indeed!!  They obviously have chemistry but Anna has thus far been reluctant to explore due to Mitch’s reputation as being a rough and tumble kind of guy and her need to appear pristine in front of the community.  Mitch sees a wild girl wrapped up in the uniform of this staid woman and aims to get that girl free.  When Anna decides to take a chance on the relationship, she realizes an essential part of “her” that she’s been repressing.  There was a great yin and yang to their relationship and for a novella; I felt it was well developed and was satisfied with the conclusion.  Mitch’s brothers were great characters and have that fun sibling ribbing going on.  I’ve put the series on my TBR – the first full length book in the series releases February 25th.

All That Remains
by Lauren Dane (Grade: C+)

This was the dirtiest of the 3 stories.  The story is set in a post-plague futuristic society where somehow there are more men than women and triads (m/m/f) are commonplace.  Summer has a moment where she connects with Charlie.  Charlie feels the same connection and wants Summer to meet his partner to find out if they can all mesh together.  Summer is game until she finds out that Charlie’s partner is none other than her ex, Hatch, who left her high and dry four years ago with a broken heart.  Hatch as never stopped loving Summer.  Even though she’s smitten with Charlie, Summer is definitely gun-shy about risking her heart with Hatch again.  Both men work hard to prove to Summer that they should be in a permanent relationship.  This was a so-so story for me on a couple of levels: I’m not a big fan of triads (ménage is for temporary relationships and triad for permanent) as I can’t wrap my head around how the relationship works.  Also, the world wasn’t developed much at all, so other than the male to female ratio explained, I didn’t get a sense of how everything fits together.  That being said, the sex was explicit, took up most of the story and was very dirty.  The author does set up the next book in the series: Summer’s sister, Dulce, which looks to be a heartbreaker.

*ARC provided by authors

Click to purchase: Amazon

Marked
by Kit Rocha, Vivian Arend, Lauren Dane
Release Date: February 8, 2014

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