Review: Claimed by Desire

Reviewed by Jen

It’s been 10 years since Misty has been to the Isle of Frealon, the shapeshifter world where she once made her home.  10 years since she last saw Rafe, the man she loved… The man who banished her to the human realm.  Misty is an empath and Rafe is a dragon shifter.  Their kinds aren’t supposed to mate. But she would have given anything to spend her life in his arms.  Rafe thought her sacrifice would be too great. Once a woman mates with a Draco, she has only 20 years left to live.  He forced her to leave, so that she could live a long life and find happiness without him.

Now, the Draco queen needs help. The stone which is the source of their strength has been stolen. She needs Misty’s empathetic powers to flush it out.  Of course, Rafe will be her guard on her mission.  Seeing him again brings all the old feelings back.  And being with Misty is a dream come true for Rafe. He refused to take a mate after she left and now he’s dying as a result.  He wants nothing more than to spend his last days with the woman he loves.   The two must work together to save Rafe’s people, while dealing with their unresolved feelings for one another.

I liked the story. It was sexy and the fact that these two have a history makes it easy to get right down to business.  My only complaint is that Misty gets over her anger and hurt awfully fast. 10 years is a long time to live in exile. But I’m a sucker for Dragon shifters. Though he’s a bit of a martyr, Rafe is verra sexy.  There’s a great heat factor and a sweet romance here.

The book’s not too deep. After all, it’s less than 100 pages.  But I thought the world-building was interesting, the love story was satisfying, and the sex was hot. I hope Kristen Miller revisits this world again so I can go along for the ride.

Rating: B-

*ARC provided by author for review

Click to purchase: Amazon
Claimed by Desire
by Kristen Miller
Release Date: May 1, 2012
Publisher: Harlequin Nocturne

Review: Vamped Up

Reviewed by Jen

I’ll be honest. When I started reading, I was already annoyed because I couldn’t find a decent summary description on this book anywhere. I don’t like spoilers, but I do want at least a general idea of what I am about to read.  I’m off-topic already, but it had to be said. Now, let me give you the basics.

We first met Eve and Ruan back in Intervamption and it was clear even then that they were on the path to get their own story. Unfortunately, this book really kind of skips over all of the falling in love parts. We’ve had a time jump of a few weeks since the last book and our couple is already involved in a serious relationship as this story begins. Ruan is a vampire and Eve is a human, which is causing some problems. Ruan wants to take her blood, but he knows he doesn’t have the control to stop feeding once he starts. He’s been having dreams about killing Eve and it’s scaring him to death. His fears are driving a wedge between them, which is made worse by the fact that he won’t tell her what’s going on inside him.

Meanwhile, Savage is back and he still wants to take over as the leader of the vampires. His latest plan to accomplish that is to learn how to harness and control the powerful dark spirits that dwell within the Elders of the race. It’s not as easy as he first hoped and eventually his nefarious plan brings him to Eve, who turns out to be much more than a mundane human.

It took me a really long time to get into this book. Perhaps, this is because so much of the love connection between Ruan and Eve happened off page. Maybe because I was frustrated by Ruan’s unwillingness to communicate. I don’t know.  The characters fell flat and I couldn’t connect to their relationship. I just wasn’t feeling the book at all, until about halfway-in… when we started to see the set-up for side character Dante’s story. It wasn’t a great sign that I was more interested in what happened to him than what was going on with our main couple.

Eventually, Eve and Ruan’s story does get more interesting, as we begin to learn about their hidden pasts. But it took too long to get there. I felt like this book had potential that it just didn’t reach. I liked the last book better and hopefully Dante’s story will reel me back in to this series. He seems like a pretty tortured hero –and I’m such a sucker for those.  3 stars.

*ARC Provided by NetGalley

Click to purchase: Amazon
Vamped Up
by Kristen Miller
Release Date: December 7, 2011
Publisher: Avon

Review: Intervamption

Reviewed by Jen

Whoever wrote the blurb on this book did it a real disservice. Not only does it fail to really tell you what the book is about, but it does not reflect the tone. It comes off as this quirky, kind of light, self-referential vampire book. But it’s really a sexy paranormal romance with a creative twist on vampire and shifter world building.

Slade is a therian assassin. Or at least, he was, until he failed at a mission nearly a century ago. But suddenly, his leader drafts him back into service. He has to use his shapeshifting ability to pose as a vampire. He’ll infiltrate his enemies’ khiss to secure some ancient scrolls, then take out a mark who will be identified later.

Almost right away, his path crosses with Dylan. She has devoted her life to running a blood clinic for vampires fighting their bloodlust. She was chosen to help indoctrinate Slade into the khiss. And from the first moment, they were drawn together in a fiery attraction. Unfortunately, she is informed she must mate with another vampire… a man she doesn’t love… a royal. But Slade is determined to find a way for her to avoid that fate. The two work together to find the scrolls, which might not only provide a way out for Dylan, but may even show the way to end the long war between their people.

There was a lot going on beyond the main story, but the world building was clear and easy to follow; and I never had any trouble keeping the characters straight.

The romance was sexy… and reminded me a little of Underworld with the vampires & shifters at war, and prophesy and hybrids. OK, maybe not… that’s where the similarities end. But this gives me an excellent excuse to let my thoughts drift to Scott Speedman.

Back to the book. It was good. There were some pretty good twists… and a surprise at the end. I’m happy to say that this is one Epilogue that features neither a token wedding sequence or a baby. The author also builds in a solid set-up for a sequel featuring Dylan’s friend, Ruan.  And I’m looking forward to it. A little more than 4 stars.

*ARC Provided by NetGalley  

by Kristen Miller
Release Date: July 26, 2011
Publisher: Avon Impulse