Review: Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs

Reviewed by Jen

This was easily the best book I have read in ages. For a series that has been running as long as the Mercy Thompson one has, it has to be hard to maintain the quality that these books have, but Patricia Briggs somehow manages to do it and do it spectacularly.

Briggs does a few things different with this book. One, is that it is told in split point of view alternating between Mercy and Adam. Not only that, but the timeline between their respective chapters was a little bit off. From another author, this could be a complete train wreck. But it totally worked here. [Read more…]

Jen’s Favorites of 2016

I haven’t read quite as many books this year as I did in years past. Part of the reason is the huge life changes that came with a new job and a major move for my family. The other came with my sudden burning desire to write a book of my own.

So my reading list was shorter, but I still found some great titles in 2016! [Read more…]

Review: Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs

fire touchedReviewed by Jen

It’s a pretty rare thing for a series to really hold on to its spark after nine installments. But this one does it. Reading this book was like falling back into a familiar world I know and love. I didn’t want to put it down, not because it was an adrenaline filled ride, but because I cared what would happen next. Mercy Thompson is a fantastic heroine.  She is not the strongest or the most powerful, but she is astute and loyal, and when the chips fall, she comes through every time. [Read more…]

Review: Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs

dead heatReviewed by Jen

Patricia Briggs never disappoints me with her Alpha and Omega stories. I really enjoyed jumping back into Charles and Anna’s world as they go on a vacation that runs afoul.  The plot moves well and the story is engaging, but what sells this story for me (as with every installment in this series) are the main characters and the relationship they have with one another. [Read more…]

Jen’s Most Anticipated Books of 2015

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Can you believe it’s already time to look ahead to 2015? Here are some of the books on my radar for the coming year:

burned 1Burned by Karen Marie Moning – I went back and forth with myself about whether to include this one. The date has been pushed back so many times — and I know the focus has changed drastically over revisions. But the truth is, I’ve inhaled every single book in this series so far. And whether it’s about Dani or Mac or, frankly, whoever, I know I am going to buy it the day it comes out.

Release Date: January 20, 2015 (or so they say) [Read more…]

Review: Shifting Shadows – Stories From the World of Mercy Thompson by Patricia Briggs

shifting shadowsReviewed by Jen

This anthology contains a smattering of short stories set in the world of Mercy Thompson. They span centuries. Some have no discernible link to the characters and storylines we know. Others tie directly in with the series. I enjoyed a few of the stories more than others, but I thought all were worth reading. [Read more…]

Review: Night Broken by Patricia Briggs

night broken_front mech.inddReviewed by Jen

This was one of the most emotionally resonant Mercy Thompson books I have read.  Patricia Briggs always does a good job of putting us inside Mercy’s head, but I think this book really hit home for me because her emotional struggles centered on something that could just as easily happen to any one of us.  The return of the ex.

That’s right, Adam’s ex-wife is the main foil of this story and I’ve got to say it felt kind of unusual for a relationship factor to take center stage in one of these books.  Of course, Christy isn’t the only issue.  [Read more…]

Review: Frost Burned

Reviewed by Jen

After the big ending of Fair Game, I really expected this book to focus on the aftermath of that one.  It doesn’t.  Of course, the decision by the Fae to pull away from human society is incorporated into the story, but it is by no means, part of the main plot.

The big driver of the book: someone has kidnapped Adam and almost all of his pack.  Only by a twist of luck were Mercy and Jesse away from home during the abduction.  She must find a way to keep Jesse safe and pool her resources to try to rescue her husband.  It’s not easy. The bad guys are after her too.  And she has to reach outside her comfort zone to trust those she needs as allies.  But in typical Mercy fashion, when the chips fall, she manages to do what needs to be done.

I enjoyed this book far more than I did the last Mercy installment. It recaptured the feel of the older books in a lot of ways.  We’re back on Mercy’s home turf.  Her allies are with her. I had missed Ben and Stefan. They are two of my favorite supporting characters in the series.  It wasn’t only them, but Zee, Tad, Gabriel, Tony, Kyle, and the pack too.  I also like that even with Mercy and Adam’s wedding, it doesn’t make all the pack members forget how they feel about her.  Those who didn’t like her before, still don’t like her now.   It’s not all sunshine and roses.

Mercy and Adam are apart for much of the book, but Patty Briggs does a great job showing how strong their relationship is.  How they draw strength from one another.  Plus, as an added treat, we get to spend some time in Adam’s head, getting some passages from his POV.  Very cool.

It’s awesome how Briggs ties in the events of the previous stories, keeping the continuity among the books. But I will admit that there were a couple of times my memories grew a bit hazy on the details, especially when we got into who all the vampires were.  Perhaps I should have done a re-read. (Specifically in retrospect, a refresher on Bone Crossed might have been helpful.) But Briggs did a good job filling in the blanks when my memory failed me.

There is a pretty notable loss for the pack, though so much is going on, I don’t really feel like we got the chance to feel the real emotional impact. My only other complaint… I felt a disconnect between the two factions involved in the kidnapping. The first tier made sense, but I didn’t get how it was connected to the “other” threat.  How they ended up working together… or at least toward the common end of the kidnapping. (Plus, the last couple of scenes in the book felt out of order, as they jumped around chronologically.)

Overall, though, I liked it. I think it will be a hit for fans of the series.

Rating: B

*ARC Provided by Ace

Click to purchase: Amazon 
Frost Burned
by Patricia Briggs
Release Date: March 5, 2013
Publisher: Ace

Favorites From… Patricia Briggs

 Patricia Briggs

Benedict Jacka is a fairly new author, but I like what he’s doing. His first book is Fated, the second Cursed.  His hero is smart and smart-mouthed, who couldn’t like him?

Jane Fancher’s Blood Red Moon is a lovely book with more than a nod to Stoker’s Dracula.  It is available for the Kindle on Amazon or on the website store here. It’s self pubbed, but don’t worry — Fancher is a professional with a number of books from the NY publishers and her editor is C J Cherryh.  It’s a lot of fun and her prose is like chocolate.

Robin McKinley is no stranger to fantasy readers anywhere, but just in case hard-core urban fantasy fans missed a terrific urban fantasy from one of my favorites —  McKinley’s World Fantasy Award winning Sunshine is lovely.  And be careful, lest you be struck with the urge to make cinnamon rolls while reading it.

I also just finished Kalayna Price’s Grave Memory about grave witch Alex Craft.  I really enjoyed her first two books in the series, but this is my favorite so far.

Thank you so much to Patricia Briggs for sharing some recommendations! I asked Patty to be a part of the feature because I love both her Mercy Thompson series and the Alpha and Omega spinoff books.  Mercy is favorite for many readers. She is a coyote shifter who lives among wolves and other supernaturals.  I, too, think Mercy is great, but I think I love the A&O books a little bit more.  Mercy is a bit more Urban Fantasy, while the Alpha and Omega books are paranormal romances, centered on a werewolf couple –Charles and Anna. The two series intertwine and intersect. I would whole-heartedly recommend them both! 

Now, here is your chance to try one of Patty’s recommendations. Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below to enter to win Grave Memory by Kalayna Price.  US only. You can also enter to win an ecopy of Blood Red Moon by Jane Fancher. This one is international.

Be sure to check out all of the Favorites From My Favorites posts and giveaways this month, by clicking here.
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5 for Friday – August 17

This week has kicked my ass. I still have not recovered from my rocking weekend in New Orleans.  I got home Sunday night –which was also my daughter’s birthday– and after groceries, homework, laundry, etc, I made it to bed around 1:30. I was back up at 6:30, getting the kids ready for school and jumping back into the work week. A smart person would have taken Monday off.  Clearly, I am not a smart person.  I am, however, slowly getting back into my regular schedule of books, Twitter, and dirty-man Tumblr. The Gods are smiling on me.

5.  While I was away, the lovely Patty Briggs revealed the cover for her next Mercy Thompson book, Frost Burned.

Shapeshifter Mercy Thompson’s life is calming down, at least enough that she can focus on mundane matters like Black Friday sales. But on her return, Mercy is unable to contact her mate, Alpha Adam Hauptman, or the other members of their pack. All she knows is that Adam is angry and in pain.

With the werewolves fighting a political battle to gain acceptance from the public, Mercy fears Adam’s disappearance may be related – and that he and the pack are in serious danger. Outclassed and on her own, Mercy may be forced to seek assistance from the most unlikely of allies: the vampire seethe.

I am really excited to read this one. I can’t wait to see the repercussions from the end of the last Alpha & Omega book. It’s going to be awesome.  Frost Burned comes out March 5th.

4. Amanda Carlson was one of the lovely authors I met at AAD last week. Her debut, Full Blooded is out in September. (More on that in a bit.) She’s already got cover art for book two, Hot Blooded.

Her mate has been kidnapped by a Goddess hell-bent on revenge — but Jessica is playing for keeps.Because she’s the only female werewolf in town…it comes with its own set of rules…and powers.
Aided by two vamps, two loyal Pack members, and one very reluctant human, Jessica must rescue her man while coming to terms with what being a wolf really means. All in a day’s work for a girl.
The second novel in the Jessica McClain series is a full on action adventure featuring one angry Goddess and plenty of monsters, demons, and a few newly risen beasties…

Ewa de Cruz is so gorgeous. I want to look like her in my next life.  Hot Blooded releases in April 2013. To win your very own copy of Full Blooded, fill out the Rafflecopter form below.

3. Everyone tells me that Downtown Abbey is must-see-tv.  Unfortunately, I missed all the buzz until season two was almost over.  But the trailer is out for season three and now I am wondering if I should jump on the bandwagon.  Do I need to rent seasons one and two? Give me some deets on the appeal.

(The site hosting the season three trailer took it down. This video has clips from season two.)

2. It’s about time.  The Price is Right is inviting a male model to Come on Down. The show is doing a casting call to become the show’s first male showcase model. A web series will document the casting process.  I don’t know about you, but I think this is long overdue.  Who doesn’t want to see a hot dude openly caressing a washing-machine or some luggage?

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1. And this one little piece of random.  It may not be politically correct, but I will go to my grave loving this song.  Check out Baby Got Back, Sung by the Movies.

Hope your weekend rocks.

XOXO,
Jen

P.S. I have no idea how to work this link into today’s post, but when I read the article, I laughed so hard that I cried and my stomach hurt.  I have to share it. (Warning – Potty Humor)

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