Review: Heart of Darkness by Lauren Dane

Reviewed by Jen

I had high expectations going into this book –A– because I have heard great things about Lauren Dane and –B– some of my other bookish friends gave it generally positive reviews. While I didn’t actively dislike it, unfortunately, this wasn’t a winner for me. The worldbuilding is solid and pretty interesting, but I failed to connect with the characters and I didn’t feel invested in their romance.

Meriel is a powerful witch and the heir apparent to her family’s clan. The only thing that is holding her back from reaching her potential is the fact that she has not found her bondmate and ascended with him. Finding her magical other-half happens pretty quickly, though, when she goes to investigate a loner witch who is using her family’s magical font without permission. [Read more…]

Review: With the Dawn by Cassandra Sky West

Reviewed by Ronelle

A witch, a vampire, and a witch walk into a bar… except there’s no bar, just a trio of unlikely friends determined to stay alive.

Alexi Creed wakes up in a morgue drawer, with no knowledge of who she is, where she’s being held, or even why. Only quick thinking and newfound vampiric reflexes allow her to avoid an unpleasant death. But even as she flees the nightclub under which she’d been held, she’s jumping out of the frying pan and straight into a fire that could easily consume her.

Savanna Grace is on the run from another witch bent on her destruction. Worse yet, the other witch is her own mother and the woman is pulling out all the stops to have her revenge. Savanna has been running for far too long and her gift of precognition tells her that Alexi is her only hope of survival. She can’t run anymore. [Read more…]

Review: Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay

princess-of-thornsReviewed by Shelly

I don’t like it when a blurb compares its story to another (my expectations will be set) and I’m glad I didn’t read the blurb for this before I dug in. The cover is what drew me in. I’ve been around the bend listening to audiobooks and a friend told me that a good genre for listening is PNR. So here I go.

The first chapter drew me in. It’s from Aurora’s 7-year-old point of view. She, her mother, and brother have been slated for death by the evil ruler. Her father’s already dead so they’re without his support. Aurora’s mother knows of a way to help save her children and she doesn’t hesitate. She gifts her daughter with her fae powers; this gift is by no means without consequences and Aurora’s mother gives the ultimate sacrifice. Even at 7, Aurora feels different after her endowment. There’s a different energy about her and with fervent determination, Aurora is fixed on vengeance for her mother and to regain the kingdom of her father. [Read more…]

Review: Shadowed Blade by JC Daniels

shadowed bladeReviewed by Jen

I know it’s hard to wait for a new book when you love a series. I’m right there with you, griping and wondering if that precious story I want is ever going to get here. This book, in particular, was one we had to wait on. And I hate to say it, but we should have waited a little bit longer. The story is a good one. As it unfolds, there are some major revelations. It unlocks secrets and it changes Kit’s life. It’s a big deal and the ideas are really good. But the book feels so unfinished. By that, I don’t mean that there’s a problem with the ending. I mean, it needed more work. It needed more time, and maybe as fans, that’s partly our fault for pushing so hard for it to come out.  It wasn’t ready, and you’ll be able to tell. [Read more…]

Review: Wicked Burn by Rebecca Zanetti

wicked burnReviewed by Jen

Though I haven’t loved the Realm Enforcers books as much as the Dark Protectors series from which they came, I have to say that this third installment was definitely a bigger hit for me than the first two. That’s probably because –A– this heroine is every bit as badass as the hero and –B– the story feels much more tied into the original series and characters.

Rebecca Zanetti has been sprinkling in little teases about the romance between Simone and Nick for the past couple of books. Now, they’re finally the main event. It’s a second chance at love story for these two. They were supposed to be mated a century ago. But a prophet warned Nick that he must take another path or risk Simone dying from a plague only he could help prevent. It forced him to break her heart and live a dark life, but his sacrifices paid off. Now that he has fulfilled his mission, all he wants is another chance with the powerful witch he has loved a lifetime. [Read more…]

Review: The Dragon’s Temptation by Lily Cahill

dragons temptationReviewed by Joanna

I picked this up because I was intrigued by the idea of having five authors write one book as one voice. Can this ever be consistent?

So, to the premise. Felicity and her sister Joy have moved from NYC to Augustus to get away from their famous family, the Valdez, and all the trouble that comes with their name. They now run a tea shop called the Witches Brew where Felicity uses her magic powers to create potions and cool cakes and the like, whilst Joy takes her smokin’ body on drug binges and out night clubbing. [Read more…]

Review: Wicked Edge by Rebecca Zanetti

wicked edgeReviewed by Jen

I have mixed feelings about this book and it pains me to say so. I really enjoyed Rebecca Zanetti’s Dark Protector series. But despite the fact that the Realm Enforcer books exist in the same world with crossover characters, this doesn’t have the same magic for me. I was lukewarm with book one and this second installment gave me as much grief as enjoyment.

My biggest issue is with the Alpha-hole hero. Daire is one of the Dunne brothers, who protect the Coven Nine witches. We established in the last book that they are away from their Irish home, trying to root out the source of a drug that is deadly to witches. They are undercover in a motorcycle gang (though in this installment that connection is almost superfluous.) As the story begins, Daire picks up a beautiful woman in a biker bar and takes her home for the night. He has no idea she is not the human she appears. He finds out quickly, though, when she manages to drug him and ransack his house. [Read more…]

Review: Dead and Kicking by Lisa Emme

dead and kickingReviewed by Jen

I have to say, there just aren’t as many new Urban Fantasy series out there as there used to be, so it’s kind of exciting for me to find one that I enjoyed. I read this debut by Lisa Emme in one sitting. While it doesn’t exactly reinvent the wheel, it is an entertaining story that fills a void in the market right now. There is just enough of a romantic thread to satisfy. And there is a promise of more story without a cliffhanger to raise your blood pressure. [Read more…]

Review: Wicked Ride by Rebecca Zanetti

wicked rideReviewed by Jen

I was such a fan of the Dark Protectors series that when I learned about this spinoff, it was the squee heard ’round the world.  This book features characters from the same world and cameo appearances from some old favorites.  It felt familiar in a lot of ways and I enjoyed it. But it was missing the fantastic series arc that knocked the Dark Protectors out of the park –and I felt the lack. [Read more…]

Review: Hearts of Stone by Inka Loreen Minden

hearts of stoneReviewed by Jen

I had a very difficult time pushing through the first quarter of this book. I almost put it down a few times, but I powered through, hoping it would deliver on the promise of its premise.  The book is about a gargoyle who serves as a secret guardian to a witch on a mission to fight demons and save her brother.  Noir has no idea that Vincent exists, and even if she did, he is forbidden to ever touch her. So he worships her from a distance and has devoted himself to serving as her protector.  I loved the sound of this, so I at least wanted to give the story a chance to get to the good stuff. I’m glad I did, because it definitely got better. [Read more…]