vrijdag 22 mei 2015

Recommendations from Freya for May 2015.

In order to bring some more variety to my blog, I have asked some of my bookish friends to tell about the books they have in the past month, and to give us a recommendation. Today’s post is made by Freya from Holland.


The books I’ve read this month are:

- Anthology: Masters of seduction 2 by Lara Adrian, Donna Grant, Alexandra Ivy and Laura Wright

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- Gini Koch: Alien Research

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- Shelly Laurenston: The Unleashing

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- J.D. Robb: Obsession in death

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These were all great books, I’ll write more about Gini when I’ve finished her latest book. And J.D. Robb needs no recommendation on this blog. The Masters of seduction anthology was a bit of a disappointment, mostly because the story arc that was started in the first anthology wasn’t followed through. These were interesting and hot stories, but I had expected more.

So the one I want to recommend is: Shelly Laurenston – The Unleashing, even though it is not her best. I’ve been a fan of Shelly since I’ve read Pack Challenge and never regretted it.
She is the only one I buy in trade paperback. I love her shifters and her books are the ones I reread when I’m sick or otherwise down.

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Kera Watson never expected to face death behind a Los Angeles coffee shop. Not after surviving two tours lugging an M16 around the Middle East. If it wasn't for her hot Viking customer showing up too late to help, nobody would even have seen her die. In uncountable years of service to the Allfather Odin, Ludvig "Vig" Rundstrom has never seen anyone kick ass with quite as much style as Kera. He knows one way to save her life - but she might not like it. Signing up with the Crows will get Kera a new set of battle buddies: cackling, gossiping, squabbling, party-hearty women. With wings. So not the marines. But Vig can't give up on someone as special as Kera.
With a storm of oh-crap magic speeding straight for LA, survival will depend on combining their strengths: Kera's discipline, Vig's loyalty...and the Crows' sheer love of battle. Boy, are they in trouble.

But The Unleashing disappoints unfortunately. The story is interesting, the women are kick-ass as usual. The men are strong but also somewhat goofy. But it doesn’t sparkle as the other books I’ve read, when she’s on the top of her game.
Shelly always uses a lot of characters in her books, and I am used to that. In her Shifters and Dragon books it came gradually, adding as the story goes. Here it comes with a big bang, which can get confusing.

Then why recommend her book? Mainly because I love Shelly’s writing. She sets up a very interesting world, one she started in The Hunting Season. This is not a sequel, but a ‘reboot’, with the same kind of characters. Female Crows, followers of Skuld and male Ravens, followers of Odin. And they are fun, crazy and no-holds-barred group of women.
And one other major selling point is Brodie, a rescue dog, Kera takes with her to her new life and has become a Crow by itself. She was fun!!!
I’ll probably reread it when the next book comes, and buy that one too, hoping it will get as good as her Shifters and Dragons books.

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Aurian: Thanks for the recommendation Freya! You’ve hooked me on her Shifter books, and I definitely want to read this one as well. Even if you did not like it as much as the rest of her books. How about you reader, have you read this one? Do you want to?

© 2015 Reviews by Aurian

donderdag 21 mei 2015

Victoria Abbott – The Christie Curse

The first book in the Book Collector Mystery series, published March 5, 2013.
Genre: cozy mystery
Cover: nice. But my book has the smaller cover, with the rescued dog in it.

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In 1926, Agatha Christie disappeared - making headlines across the world - only to show up eleven days later at a spa under an assumed name. During those eleven days, did she have time to write a play?
Jordan Kelly needs a new job and a new place to live. She's back in Harrison Falls, New York, living with her not so law-abiding uncles, in debt thanks to a credit card - stealing ex and pending grad school loans.
Enter the perfect job, a research position that includes room and board, which will allow her to spend her days hunting down rare mysteries for an avid book collector. There's just one problem: her employer, Vera Van Alst - the most hated citizen of Harrison Falls.
Jordan's first assignment is to track down a rumored Agatha Christie play. It seems easy enough, but Jordan soon finds out that her predecessor was killed while looking for it, and there is still someone out there willing to murder to keep the play out of Vera's hands. Jordan's new job is good...but is it worth her life?

I had this series on my wishlist for a while, and now that Victoria Abbott has joined my favourite cozy authors’ blog, The Cozy Chicks, I really wanted to read it. So I was glad when I found a copy recently.

I really like Jordan, the heroine in this series. She has a very quirky background, she grew up with a lot of uncles who don’t take the laws very seriously. And she has some skills herself along that line. She loves vintage clothing and has an awesome car.
Jordan is confident, and I absolutely loved how she treated the cranky Vera van Alst, her new employer, and did her job as well as possible, and also looking for the killer of her predecessor, when she became the number one suspect in a murder attempt on a new acquaintance. She found things out, and was not stupid in taking care of herself.

She also took care of Karen’s dog while his mistress is in the hospital. And it was so much fun to see how quickly her uncles bonded with this dog and spoil it rotten, while as a child Jordan was not allowed a pet.

Jordan is staying with Vera van Alst in her mansion, with her aging housekeeper who is a fiend in the kitchen and always stuffing them with delicious food and coffee. Vera doesn’t hardly touch her food, but Jordan certainly appreciates it! Her uncles are not of the cooking kind, and warming something out of a can is about all they manage.

And then there is that strange cop that keeps showing up everywhere that Jordan does, helping her out in a tight spot or two, but with her family background, Jordan does not trust a cop. What he is hiding? And why is he so often out of his jurisdiction?

The murder mystery was a very good one, I did not see that coming at all. Ofcourse I know Agatha Christy, I have read a few of her books and I am a big fan of the Hercule Poirot tv series with David Suget. In other books I recently read, there was also the issue of her short disappearance, using her husband’s mistress’ name in a hotel that was a stroke of fun and revenge. And perhaps she really did write a play that is yet to surface, who knows.

I do look forward to reading the next book in the series.

8 stars.

A blogger made me buy it

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

© 2015 Reviews by Aurian

woensdag 20 mei 2015

New additions to my addiction

Stapel boeken

My sixth new additions post for 2015. It’s a lovely long list, and I have already read several of those books. Now to write the reviews, that is a whole other day job! And I have a lot of other books coming in the next few weeks, so I am in book heaven!

From Bookdepository:
Laura Childs – Steeped in Evil
Ellery Adams – Lemon pies and little white lies
Susan Wittig Albert – Death Come Quickly
J.K. Beck – When Darkness Hungers
Faith Hunter – Dark Heir
Jennifer Ashley – Mate Bond
Jennifer Ashley – Shifter Mates
Amanda Quick – Otherwise Engaged
Suzanne Enoch – Mad, Bad and Dangerous in Plaid
Kresley Cole – Dark Skye
Kim Harrison – The Witch with no name
Jude Deveraux – For all time
Heather Blake – Some like it witchy
Jenn Bennett – Grave Phantoms
Christine Feehan – Cat’s Lair
Thea Harrison – Midnight’s Kiss
Kelly Hunter – The Spy who tamed me
Kelly Hunter – What the Bride didn’t know

In Berlin:
Annie West – The Sultan Harem’s Bride

Second hand books:
Tessa Adams – Dark Embers
Tessa Adams – Hidden Embers
Starr Ambrose – Thieves like us
Vivian Arend – Rocky Mountain Heat
Marcella Burnard – Enemy Games
Robyn Carr – The Hero
Ashlyn Chase – The werewolf upstairs
Karina Cooper – Blood of the Wicked
Sydney Croft – Riding the Storm
Sydney Croft – Seduced by the Storm
Sydney Croft – Unleashing the Storm
Kimberly Derting – The Body Finder
Kate Douglas – Dream Bound
Nancy Haddock – Last Vampire Standing
Erin Kellison – Fire Kissed
Sherrilyn Kenyon and Diana Love – Whispered Lies
Erin Kern – Looking for Trouble
Kate Lane – Catch me a Cowboy
Susan Mallery – A Fools Gold Christmas
Marliss Melton – In the Dark
Lisa Marie Rice – Dangerous Passion
Lisa Marie Rice – Into the Crossfire
J.D. Robb – Delusion in Death
Romina Russell – Zodiac
Candis Terry – Second Chance at the Sugar Shack
RaeAnne Thayne – Currant Creek Valley
Debbie ViguiĆ© – The Thirteenth Sacrifice
Julie Ann Walker – In rides trouble
Lori Wilde – The First Love Cookie Club
Judith Krantz – Spring Collection
Barbara Taylor Bradford – Unexpected Blessings
Olivia Goldsmith – The Bestseller

© 2015 Reviews by Aurian

dinsdag 19 mei 2015

Patricia Briggs – Dead Heat

The fourth book in the Alpha and Omega series, published March 3, 2015.
Genre: urban fantasy
Cover: strong, but I just can’t see Anna in this cover model.

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Praised as "the perfect blend of action, romance, suspense and paranormal" (Rex Robot Reviews), the Alpha and Omega novels transport listeners into the realm of the werewolf, where Charles Cornick and Anna Latham embody opposite sides of the shifter personality. Now a pleasure trip drops the couple into the middle of some bad supernatural business....
For once, mated werewolves Charles and Anna are not travelling because of Charles' role as his father's enforcer. This time their trip to Arizona is purely personal, as Charles plans to buy Anna a horse for her birthday. Or at least it starts out that way....
Charles and Anna soon discover that a dangerous Fae being is on the loose, replacing human children with simulacrums. The Fae's cold war with humanity is about to heat up - and Charles and Anna are in the cross fire.

The Fae have withdrawn themselves from the human world, or have they? Some old and not so very nice Fae have been set free to wreak havoc amongst the humans, a warning that the Fae are not harmless nor helpless. When Charles and Anna set out to visit some old friends from Charles who own a horse farm, to buy a horse for Anna, they find themselves in the midst of things.
Joseph is one of the few true friends Charles has, and still he hasn’t seen him and his wife Maggie for twenty years. Charles wants to change Joseph into a werewolf, to prevent him from dying, as he is an old and sick man now, but Joseph refuses. His own father, Hosteen, is a werewolf, and the local alpha. His son Kage is working in the stables along with his grandfather.

An evil Fae is stealing children, leaving changelings in their place. And when Kage’s wife get bespelled by it, it is up to Charles and Anna to put a stop to it. By endangering the family of a werewolf, they are no longer bound by the treaty between the Fae and the Marrok. But never could they guess the horrors they would see.

An awesome story yet again. I have to admit, the looking for a horse for Anna in between the detective work became a bit tiresome, as I am just not that into horses, and a lot of the special horse language is like math for me: above my head and not all that interesting. But it gave them some rest, and some quiet together time after the horrors of the day, and that was nice. I really liked Chelsea, Kage’s wife, and I think she will be giving Hosteen some trouble in the future.

I am anxious to find out more about the almost war between the Fae and the humans, and what will happen next. There are so many possibilities but Patricia Briggs always manages to surprise me with her stories, and I love that.
I really enjoy this series with Anna and her Charles, but I do prefer the Mercy series, sorry Karin.

10 stars.

Autobuy authorLove this book

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

© 2015 Reviews by Aurian

maandag 18 mei 2015

Anne Bishop – Vision in Silver

The third book in the Others series, published March 3, 2015.
Genre: urban fantasy
Cover: nice

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The New York Times best-selling author of The Black Jewels Trilogy transports readers to a world of magic and political unrest - where the only chance at peace requires a deadly price....

The Others freed the cassandra sangue to protect the blood prophets from exploitation, not realizing their actions would have dire consequences. Now the fragile seers are in greater danger than ever before - both from their own weaknesses and from those who seek to control their divinations for wicked purposes. In desperate need of answers, Simon Wolfgard, a shape-shifter leader among the Others, has no choice but to enlist blood prophet Meg Corbyn's help, regardless of the risks she faces by aiding him.
Meg is still deep in the throes of her addiction to the euphoria she feels when she cuts and speaks prophecy. She knows each slice of her blade tempts death. But Others and humans alike need answers, and her visions may be Simon's only hope of ending the conflict.
For the shadows of war are deepening across the Atlantik, and the prejudice of a fanatic faction is threatening to bring the battle right to Meg and Simon's doorstep....

I loved the first book in this series, Written in Red, as I haven’t loved a book before. After finishing it, I immediately read it again. And a third time later that same week. I think I have read it 8 times already. The second book in the series, while good, did not have the same WOW-factor for me, and I still loved it, but not as much. I think I have read it twice now. But this third book certainly grabbed me again, and will be re-read often.

The story continues, the hatred and fear between ignorant humans and The Others grows, and an evil plot is in the hatching. Involving the Cassandra Sangue, and such simple things as grain. Meg is still learning how to cope with the normal world, but of course, living with the Others is not the normal world at all. But she has some good friends, and her visions save lives. Lieutenant Montgomery has a big surprise coming, his little daughter has managed to journey to him on the train all alone, with only in the end the protection of one of the Wolves. Something has happened to his ex-wife, and the police in his old town are looking at him as a suspect. Together with his captain, he is trying to find out the truth, and why are people still after his little girl and her teddy bear?
The only way to keep her safe is to keep her in the Courtyard, as the Others won’t harm little pups.
But humans will hurt and kill The Others if they leave the safety of the Courtyard, they don’t care about any punishment that will follow. Or they just don’t believe in it, even after the storm that Winter send them …

The Others keep rescuing more and more of the Cassandra Sangue, but unfortunately most of those women are unable to cope with living in the real world, and been given choices after being imprisoned all their lives. Meg will have to find a way to help them before it is to late for all of them.

I loved this book a lot. Lots of action, a great new story, lots of developments and growth, some suspense but overall great characters and a unique adventure to read about.

Best series ever written.

11 stars.

Autobuy author
Love this book

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

© 2015 Reviews by Aurian

zondag 17 mei 2015

Jim Butcher – Fool Moon

The second book in the Dresden Files series, published January 1, 2001.
Genre: urban fantasy
Cover: good

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Business has been slow. Okay, business has been dead. And not even of the undead variety. You would think Chicago would have a little more action for the only professional wizard in the phone book. But lately, Harry Dresden hasn’t been able to dredge up any kind of work – magical or mundane.
But just when it looks like he can’t afford his next meal, a murder comes along that requires his particular brand of supernatural expertise.
A brutally murdered corpse. Strange-looking paw prints. A full moon. Take three guesses – and the first two don’t count.

Another series I feel everyone has read already, and I just read the second book. But I did enjoy it and I will read the rest of the series.

Harry Dresden is a wizard in Chicago, and business is not going well for him. A newspaper article has linked him to the main mobster in town, and the police are avoiding his help. His friend Murphy is under investigation and can’t afford his help. And this means, people are dying and he doesn’t know about yet.
Are wild dogs attacking people, or do werewolves really excist? Bob the Skull gives Harry a crash course on the subject, and the four different kind of werewolves there are, and he in turn tells Murphy. But the FBI is taking over her case, and they are both not welcome to interfere. Or are they? Harry is sent to investigate a strange biker gang, who are rumoured to be werewolves, but are they? And if so, are they the killers?

A very sinister plot, and Harry gets hurt a lot, but in the end saves the day and the girl. A very good story, a good mystery and really bad guys. But is there a mastermind after him?

I hope to read book 3 soon.

8 stars.

A blogger made me buy it

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

© 2015 Reviews by Aurian

zaterdag 16 mei 2015

Yasmine Galenorn – Priestess Dreaming

Book 16 in the Otherworld / Sisters of the Moon series, published September 30, 2014.
Genre: urban fantasy
Cover: gorgeous

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We're the D'Artigo sisters: savvy half-human, half-Fae operatives for the Otherworld Intelligence Agency. My sister Delilah is a two-faced werecat and a Death Maiden. Menolly is a vampire married to a gorgeous werepuma. And me? I'm Camille, a Moon witch married to three hunky husbands, and I'm about to journey through the veils to search for a long lost legend...

With the war in Otherworld raging, the Queen of Shadow and Night summons me to her court. Aeval orders me on a quest through the mists to find an ancient ally of hers. I am to seek out The Merlin and wake him from his long sleep. Surrounded by danger on all sides, with Morgaine and Bran along for the journey, I must pray they are allies rather than enemies, as we undertake a perilous search through the labyrinth of time...

Rozurial and Vanzir really screw things up in the house, while trying to help with the Christmas decorations. A portal appears in their living room, and snow is piling up and strange and deadly creatures enter. It is up to Camille, Delilah and Menolly to set things to rights again. Camille is not happy with the pixies that have emerged, she is highly perceptible to their dust, and it makes her magic go all wrong.
It takes a lot of help, especially from Tanne Baum and Iris to destroy the portal.
Trillian and Roz are off to Otherworld to search for Trillian’s lost friend. It is not an easy journey, as the war is still raging.
An ancient power is waking, and if and when it fully wakes, it will wreak havoc on all the worlds. To send him back to sleep, they will need to find the person who put him there in the first place: The Merlin.

Aeval orders Camille to go and find The Merlin, and she certainly is not happy with her chosen companions for this trip. But at least she will have her husband Morio with her, and her sister Delilah. She doesn’t like Mordred, she actively dislikes Bran, the Raven Mother’s son, and she doesn’t care for Arturo, who is present but not really. And she really doesn’t trust Morgaine. And when they do find The Merlin, and Camille and Morio manage to wake him from his eon’s deep slumber, they find out the truth about their strange companions, and tragedy happens…

A lot of action, there is loss, and danger, but also love and humor and hope. I love this series, and am very sad that the publisher has pulled the plug after the next two books. Of course Yasmine will keep writing them and self publish them, but it is not the same. I like the pretty row of print books on my shelf.

If you have followed my blog for a while, you know I love this series. The three very different sisters, each with their own powers and destinies and love lives, working together to fight Shadow Wing. Although there is little mention of him and their quest in this book and the previous books. The characters do keep growing in their powers, and in their faith in themselves. Their adventures are never predictable, but they are capable and take care of what needs doing.

I do have the next book on my shelf, and will read it soon.

10 stars.

Autobuy authorLove this book

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

© 2015 Reviews by Aurian