Review: Shadow’s Bane by Karen Chance

Reviewed by Jen

It’s been six years since the last book in this series was released. Six. Years. And yet, when I jumped back into the world of Dorina Basarab, I remembered right away why I always enjoyed it so much. That’s not to say I remembered everything that was going on. To say that would be a lie, so if you’re wondering if you should do a re-read of the series, I would not advise against it. And why not? Those books were awesome. And so is Dory herself.

As the story begins, Dory’s life is in a place she never expected it to be. She has been tapped to join the vampire Senate. She is in love with Louis Cesar. She has vampires she is responsible for, as well as trolls, her roommate’s baby and her own sort of adopted child, albeit one that is pretty far from human. The bottom line, she has family. People who love her and depend on her. She is not everyone’s enemy. [Read more…]

Review: Lover’s Knot by Karen Chance

Reviewed by Jen

I waited to read this novella until I had the new Dorina Basarab book at hand and I am glad that I did… because while this was a fun ride, it never would have satisfied my craving after so long away from the series.

This story is told in alternating timelines and points of view. Half of it is present day Dory, while the other is told by the Mircea of the past. I have to say, I did not like this storytelling device. Yes, I like Mircea quite a lot in this series, far more than I do in the Cassie Palmer books. But, every time we switched to his point of view, it took me away with what was happening with Dorina and that was the part of the book that I really enjoyed.

Our heroine is still trying to come to terms with the fact that the other half of her personality can communicate with her and the Micea flashbacks are somehow courtesy of her dhamphir nature. Honestly, I did not entirely understand how she had access to her father’s memories, but I just had to go with it. Anyway, Louis-Cesare is missing and Dory teams up with Marlowe and Radu to search him out overseas and bring him home. [Read more…]

Review: Ride the Storm by Karen Chance

Reviewed by Jen

I have long been a fan of the Cassie Palmer series, but reading this latest installment left me feeling exhausted. Usually when I describe a book as “action-packed,” I mean it in a good way. Here, not so much. There are some good things going on: plot advancement, relationship developments, answers to long-held questions. But they’re buried beneath a avalanche of non-stop action. There is no room for the story to breathe.

The book picks up right on the heels of where the last one left off. Cassie has been trying to rescue Pritkin for the past three years (or is it longer?) though in book time, it’s only been days or weeks. This storyline has dragged on for so long. I’ve stuck with it, because I love Pritkin and Karen Chance has been giving us little Cassie-Pritkin bread-crumbs for so long, I’ve been holding out for the payoff. The problem is, the longer she’s teased me with it, the less I care about the other stuff. [Read more…]

Review: Reap the Wind by Karen Chance

reap the windReviewed by Jen

I understand the concept of dangling a carrot in front of your audience and then using it to reel them in. In this series, since about book two, the carrot for me has been a pairing of Cassie and Pritkin. Every time I crack open another installment, I think to myself, this is going to be the one where the story really advances. Some have been more impressive than others. I loved Hunt the Moon. Others, like this one, don’t really take us very far from where we started. To which I say, just give me the damn carrot. I’m tired of chasing it. I am tired of feeling jerked around with it. It’s time to give readers a payoff and come up with something new to keep us excited. [Read more…]

Review: Fury’s Kiss by Karen Chance

furys kissReviewed by Jen

Karen Chance continues to wow me with her ability to craft characters that I genuinely care about. She puts them through hell. And I cannot look away. Dory is such a fantastic heroine. She is not only the title character of this series, she is its heart and soul.  Hands down, she is one of my favorite UF heroines out there. [Read more…]

Review: Death’s Mistress by Karen Chance

deaths mistressReviewed by Jen

Love. I Love this series with a capital L.

If you haven’t read Midnight’s Daughter, the first installment, you need to start there. This book picks up where that one leaves off. There is a brand new story arc, but the relationships are under development.  Let’s face it. I’m a sucker for the relationships. But there is so much more this book has to offer. [Read more…]

Review: Midnight’s Daughter by Karen Chance

midnight's daughterReviewed by Jen

Why, oh why, did I wait so long to pick up this book? I am a big fan of Karen Chance’s Cassie Palmer books and this is a spinoff from that series.  It exists in the same world, featuring Mircea’s daughter Dory as the main protagonist.  Simply put, it has all the awesome of the Cassie books without the headache from all that time travel.

Dory is a dhampir, a part human, part vampire hybrid.  Her kind is rare and reviled by humans and vamps alike.  She is nearly immortal and has super-senses… plus she had a tendency to go into a berserker rage when pushed too far. Anyway, Dory hates her dad. She thinks he abandoned her as a child and never really cared about her. As an adult, she finds him heavy handed and wants nothing to do with him.  Unfortunately, as this story begins, he comes to her with an offer she can’t refuse. [Read more…]

Review: Masks by Karen Chance

masksReviewed by Jen

For fans of the Cassie Palmer series, Masks is a chance to learn more about one of the series’ more enigmatic characters, Mircea Basaraab. As a reader who is 100% Team Pritkin, I had hoped this book would make me a bit more sympathetic toward him. (After all, in the Cassie books, he is smooth, polished and manipulative.) And yes, on some level, it did help me understand him better. But overall, this book didn’t have the magic that Cassie series holds for me. In fact, I struggled to make it through to the end. [Read more…]

Review: Tempt the Stars

tempt the starsReviewed by Jen

Cassie Palmer fans have been waiting an age for a resolution to the cliffhanger from Hunt the Moon.  If the years have dulled your memory, Pritkin saved Cassie’s life by using his forbidden demonic powers and was promptly whisked back to hell by his dear old dad for breaking the rules.  Well, I’ll tell you this, we get the rescue mission we’ve been waiting for, but don’t expect to be satisfied.  This book ends with a cliffhanger just as gnarly as the last one.  The story kept me glued to the pages, then made me want to poke my eyes out at the very end.  Karen Chance is killing me. [Read more…]

5 for Friday – September 14

Another week has come and gone and I am just not getting enough quality reading time in lately.  As I write this, I am about 75% through with The Burning Bush by Kenya Wright. It’s reminding me of how much I enjoyed Fire Baptized! But I think it is only the second or third book I have read all week.  Life just keeps getting in the way!  Here’s hoping things slow down a bit next week… I’ve got a ton of great stuff in the queue.

5. Just a few more weeks until the release of Fury’s Kiss, book three in the Dorina Basarab series by Karen Chance. I really enjoy her Cassie Palmer books and I keep telling myself that I am going to get started on these spinoff books one of these days.  Anyway, the book trailer is out. Take a look.

Fury’s Kiss is out October 2nd.

4. Historical romance author Sara MacLean has revealed the cover for her next book, One Good Earl Deserves a Lover.

The second in the incredible new Rules of Scoundrels series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah MacLean. Lady Philippa Marbury is odd. The bespectacled, brilliant fourth daughter of the Marquess of Needham and Dolby cares more for books than balls, flora than fashion and science than the season. Nearly engaged to Lord Castleton, Pippa wants to explore the scandalous parts of London she’s never seen before marriage. And she knows just who to ask: the tall, charming, quick-witted bookkeeper of The Fallen Angel, London’s most notorious and coveted gaming hell, known only as Cross.

Like any good scientist, Pippa’s done her research and Cross’s reputation makes him perfect for her scheme. She wants science without emotion – the experience of ruination without the repercussions of ruination. And who better to provide her with the experience than this legendary man? But when this odd, unexpected female propositions Cross, it’s more than tempting . . . and it will take everything he has to resist following his instincts – and giving the lady precisely what she wants.

I liked the first book in this series, A Rogue by Any Other Name, so I am looking forward to this one.  One Good Earl Deserves a Lover is set to release on January 29th.

3. Another cover reveal… this one on Larissa Ione’s Rogue Rider.

How hot is Reseph, y’all? This book is really good! And I’m already excited for Reaver’s book in 2013!! Rogue Rider, book four in the Lords of Deliverance series, releases November 20th.

2. Sons of Anarchy returned this week, to kick off its fifth season.  This is such an amazing show!! Jax was not naked this week. He didn’t even take off his shirt. But I was surprised to discover just how much I enjoyed watching Jimmy Smits get busy.  He has either a really nice ass or a really good body double.  Who knew?

Of course, the real scene stealers this week were Tig and Harold Perrineau’s new character.  I sat on my sofa with my mouth hanging open when he threw that cigar! Holy shit! This show shies away from nothing.  It amazes and astounds me. It kicks me in the gut. And sometimes Jax is in the shower.  If you are not watching, you must hit up NetFlix right now!!

1. And finally… God, I love YouTube.  Seriously.  Jon Hamm.  Commando.  Wow.

There are no more words.