zaterdag 31 maart 2012

Nalini Singh – Angels’ Flight

A book in the Guild Hunter series, published February 28, 2012. This is a collection of 4 short stories. And this cover is so gorgeous!

Angels' Flight

If you are not familiar with this series (hard to believe, but possible) I’ll give you a little bit of a background. Archangels run the world, but not in a biblical way. God has nothing to do with it. They can Make vampires, by turning human, but not everyone survives this. If everything goes well, the vampire owns the Archangel or Angel who Made him, a 100 years of slavery. And a vampire can survive a lot of damage and heal time and again. If a vampire goes bad, or tries to run away, the Guildhunters are called to hunt him or her down, and bring them back. Preferably alive, but not always. Over the years, vampires get prettier and more powerful, but again, not all of them.

Angels’ Pawn
A vampire hunter faces off against two rival factions and the angel manipulating them both, and a vampire whose help is not entirely selfless…

It is also a prequel about the Hunter Ashwini, and her nemesis, Janvier, a very charming Cajun vampire of over 200 years old. She has hunted him three times before, as he has a bad habit of pissing of the Angel who holds his contract. But now she needs his help, as the Angel of Atlanta, Nazarach, has asked for Ashwini’s help. Two vampire factions are quarrelling, one a very old vampire family, beholden to Nazarach for centuries now, and the other a newcomer vampire with a new Kiss of vampires, who wants to take their place. Ashwini is to rescue Monique, who has been kidnapped.
Nazarach is nothing remotely human anymore, and he likes pain. He also likes excuisite things, and he wants Ashwini. Janvier will come with her to try to protect her from Nazarach. Even though the Angels are above the law and can do whatever they want with a vampire.

This short story is the prequel to Nalini Singhs world of Archangels, and it was fun re-reading it. All the names have more meaning now that I know more about the other players. It was only published as an ebook, so I am happy to have it in paper like the rest of the series.

7 stars

Angels’ Judgment
A hunter must track one of her own gone bad, while surviving the deadly tests placed in her way by the archangels themselves. Unexpected backup comes from a stranger who might just be the most lethal threat of all…

This novella has been published before, as part of the anthology Must Love Hellhounds. I liked that one. And rereading was fun.
Main characters are Deacon, the Slayer, but not vampires, he is the Hunters’ bogeyman for when a hunter goes bad. And Sara, the next in line to become the new Guild Director for America. She still has to decide if she really wants the job and give up hunting. The Cadre, the 10 most powerful Archangels in the world, have been told about her. And she is about to be tested. Not all of them believe that a woman is right for this job.
But Deacon and Sara don’t meet by chance, Deacon is out hunting, and their paths cross. Some hunter has become rogue, killing vampires who have done nothing wrong. And as there are three hunters living in the vicinity, who could be the bad apple, they have to check them all out.

8 stars.

Angels’ Wolf
A vampire becomes fascinated with the seductive angel who rules Louisiana. But all is not what it appears to be in her court.

This novella has been published before, in the anthology Angels of Darkness, which I read a few months ago, so no use rereading it already. I am skipping this one.

Angels’ Dance
An angel trapped in the mountain stronghold of the Refuge finds herself under siege by a warrior angel from a martial court.

This is a brand new story, and the reason I wanted to buy the book. Apart from the awesome cover ofcourse. And this one takes place 400 years ago.

This is the story of Jessamy, the old historian of the Angels, and the only Angel who cannot fly. For over 2600 years she has been lonely, keeping everyone at arms length, longing for the sky, but never able to go there. The best doctors have tried to heal her wing time and again, to no avail, until she put an end to the endless torture. She thinks she has accepted her existence. She is respected after all, has the confidence of Archangels, and the love of her little students. She is the keeper of history, and a teacher.
And then one day, her quiet life is disrupted, when a new Angel joins Raphael. A warrior, a barbarian, but one look at Jessamy, and he knows he wants her. Galen has come to Raphael as his new weapons master, and to train his army of Angels and vampires.
When Jessamy is attacked by a vampire, Galen is just in time to safe her, and to kill the vampire. Who wants her dead? She is respected by all. What does she know? Galen’s courting of Jessamy is interrupted by the need to protect her, and to learn from her. But the attraction is mutual, and Jessamy is overjoyed when Galen takes her flying. He is so strong, she is totally no burden for him to carry through the sky. But what he doesn’t want is her gratitude. He sets her free, even if it kills him to see other men court her. Jessamy is starting to live, finally. She is becoming stronger, but all she wants is Galen. But as immortal Angels, they will have forever, so there is no need to hurry their relationship. They have all the time they need.

This last novella is such a sweet romance. That really was at the heart of it, even though there is intrigue and battle. Another bonus is a glimpse in my favourite Angel’s life, Illium. Named Bluebell by Galen, a nickname that sticks through the ages.
I loved both main characters so much, and wanted them to be happy together. Nalini Singh has such a captivating way with words, you can just feel them. She wraps me up in the story, oblivious to everything else. The pictures she pains of the surroundings, the mountains, everything.

A great story, I do recommend this anthology to all lovers of good paranormal romance.

10 stars.

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vrijdag 30 maart 2012

Stephanie James – Serpent in Paradise (Jayne Ann Krentz)

A stand alone novel, published December 2004. My copy of the book is the small picture, and up close it is pretty.

Serpent in Paradise
Serpent in Paradise

Had she listened to a lover’s lies?
Amy Shannon met Jase Lassiter at a seedy bar called The Serpent, and she should have heeded the warning in the name. At first he offered her paradise – nights of love and days of sheer delight – but the taste of honey turned to ashes on her tongue when she thought she’d been abandoned. Now, only Jase’s return can satisfy Amy’s hunger for promises of love. Will his words take her to paradise, or exile her forever?

Amy Shannon is the successful owner of a few designer lingerie boutiques in San Francisco. To help out her beloved sister, she has flown to the tropical island of Saint Clair to meet with a stranger. Her sister’s ex-husband is some kind of adventurer, who abandoned his wife and unborn child. But a while ago, he has send her an old mask, and now someone else wants it. They fear Ty is death, and Melissa wants to know what has happened to him, so she can tell her little son when he asks about his father. And that mask will be his only memento of his father, so they will not just give it away.
Of course, it is all kind of fishy, meeting a stranger in a bar on an exotic island. And Amy feels very out of place at The Serpent. She keeps waiting for a stranger to approach her, but when that finally happens, he is not the man she is waiting for. Jase Lassiter is the owner of The Serpent, and he is fascinated with Amy. She is not the kind of tourist that visits Saint Clair, looking for a romantic fling before going back home. It has been 10 years since Jase left the States and his ex-wife behind. He likes it where he is, living day to day, without commitments and thinking about the future.

Amy is certainly not interested in a fling, no matter how handsome Jase is. And when he kisses her when he walks her back to the hotel she is staying at, it sure is not easy to keep saying no. But she manages. The next morning when she goes down for breakfast, Jase is there as well, planning on taking her on a tour of the island and a swim. She agrees, as she has to wait till the evening to go back to his bar and wait for the unknown Dirk Haley. Again she waits without result, and Jase insists on walking her back again. But when she discovers her room has been searched, he won’t take no for an answer, she is to pack her things and come home with him. Where she will be safe. But will she be safe from Jase?

Well, I think most of you can guess what happens next. Still, some nice surprises and twists in the story. I do dislike the fact though, that when a woman has slept with a man, that man thinks he has the right to know everything, and to decide and order around.

Earlier this week I was staring at my piles of new books, and really could not pick one to start reading. So desperately I went to one of my oldest beloved authors and picked one. I did not read the blurb, just put it in my handbag to read at the office in my lunchbreak the next day. I was kind of hesitant to start it, as it is written in the early 80’s, and those heroes are not really my kind of hero. They tend to be very overbearing and manhandling their heroines. Still, the author is one of my favourites, even though she wrote this initially under an older penname.

The story surprised me though. There is a bit of a mystery in it, even though it was not difficult to figure out, the suspense part was nice.

I did like Amy and Jase. Amy is a strong heroine, but well, going to an obscure tropical island to meet a possible dangerous stranger, is a very stupid thing to do. Even back in the 80’s. She is a successful business woman, and can take care of herself. She has always been wary of men, and is certainly not the trusting kind. Both her mother and her sister are single mothers, and she has vowed never to follow in their footsteps. So how can she fall for a man like Jase, who is so wrong for her? A man without a purpose, a future.
Jase left the USA when his marriage fell through, when they could not have children. And that was his fault. His wife did not want to adopt, she just got a new husband who could give her a family. He ended up on the island, and took over the bar from the previous owner after a few months. He likes the relaxed life, and the bar is doing well. Navy ships come to port regularly, and some tourists. So why is he after Amy? Who is so wrong for him, a woman who wants her man to be a grown up, not a boy who shirks from his duty. Her life is in San Francisco, and his is on the island. He hates living in a city.
How is this ever going to work?

I like Stephanie James’ writing style, she makes me like things that usually irritate me in a book. I can picture the scenery on the island, and would love to visit. The few secondary characters are really the icing on the cake, like the bartender, and the lady who owns the grocery store. Nothing is a secret for long.

If you want to read this book, well, it is out of print, so you will have to find a secondhand copy.

7 stars.

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donderdag 29 maart 2012

Patricia Briggs - Fair Game

The third book in the Alpha and Omega series, published March 2012.

Fair Game

They say opposites attract, and for werewolves Anna and Charles, this is certainly true. Charles, the pack enforcer is a dominant Alpha – whereas Anna has the power to calm others of her kind. Now that werewolves have dared to reveal themselves to humans, it’s their job to keep the pack in line. The pressure mounts when the FBI requires Charles’s assistance. He’s sent on a mission to Boston with Anna, and they quickly realise that a serial killer is targeting werewolves. And that they’re next on the killer’s list.

Anna is not so happy anymore in her marriage to Charles. He has been withdrawing from her for months now, and hasn’t touched her in weeks. She is worried, and getting desperate. He has to take a break from killing other werewolves, it is eating at him. Ever since the werewolves exposed their existence to the human world, the rules for werewolf behaviour have become stricter, and little to no second chances are given. They cannot afford to be seen as just monsters and killers. So Charles has to hunt and kill a lot lately, and he is being haunted by the ghosts of those he has killed. They are slowly eating away at him, taunting him, and to protect Anna from them, he has even closed down the mating bond between them.

When Anna goes to Bran to share her concerns, Bran waves her away. Bran is Charles’ father, and the Alpha of all the werewolves in the country, which means also the other Alpha’s. Charles has been his enforcer for many centuries, and he is used to dealing with it. And there is no one else to take over this job, so Charles will have to keep doing it. Bran doesn’t really want to believe her, but when even Asil approaches him about his concerns, he is getting worried himself. Perhaps Anna was right after all. But finding a solution is not going to be easy.

The FBI is working on a serial killer case, and has been for over 20 years. The last three victims of the killer are confirmed werewolves, and they have asked for help. Usually Bran would have sent Adam Hauptman to deal with public relations, but Adam is not able to go to Boston while his wife cannot travel (see Iron Kissed, Mercy!). So Bran decides to send Anna to deal with the FBI and the local police, and Charles as her bodyguard. Thanks to Anna being an Omega, she is perfect in dealing with the police and the FBI, and the new paranormal unit called Cantrip. She can explain how they should behave around Charles, and keep the tension low, without giving away much of their secrets.

When Anna and Charles are being filled in on the case, Charles discovers that most of the victims have been Fae. He recognizes a few of them, and they were by no means weak or powerless. Which means the killer has to be powerful himself to be able to kill so many of them for so long. He has abducted most of them from public places without being seen or smelled.

Then a young dancer is reported missing, and her father is a very powerful Fae, who insists on getting involved in the case. He will do anything in his considerable power to get his daughter back. As the victims are raped and tortured for days before they are killed, she is still alive. They just have to find her!

When they all go to the morgue next, Charles immediately notices that the carvings in the victims’ skin are the work of a witch. And as all the witches’ families have their own runes and such, the witches hired by the FBI have been lying. They have to know who has done this. Luckily, the Boston werewolf pack has some witches on retainer, and one of them is willing to come and take a look.

I am not going to spoil anymore of the story, all I can say is this: read this book!

I really loved this book. All of it. The relationship between Charles and Anna is just awesome, and I especially love the interactions with Brother Wolf, Charles’s alter ego, his werewolf. They both love Anna so very much, and need her, and need to see her happy and well fed. Anna has come a long way from being an abused and malnourished little werewolf to the person she is today. She is determined never to be a victim again. She deals very well with all the different agents, except for the obnoxious one from Cantrip. He is lying, and he loathes Fae and Werewolves.
The female FBI agent is a wonderful secondary character; the book starts with a glimpse in her own history. I really liked her a lot. She was great in dealing with everything.

The Alpha of the Boston werewolf pack is also a great character. He has no clue what Anna is, and he is afraid of Charles, but will stand up against him if necessary. In the end, he is a really big help.

But the ending of the book, o the ending. So good, so heartbreaking, so unexpected, I loved it. And I do wonder how this will reflect in Mercy’s world, especially with her beloved mentor Zee.

9,5 stars.

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dinsdag 27 maart 2012

New additions to my addiction

Three more lovely books found their way home today.

Patricia Briggs - Fair Game
Laurell K. Hamilton - Skin Trade
Laurell K. Hamilton - Obsidian Butterfly

Of course, the Hamiltons have been read a few times already, but I finally bought them in paperback. One more to arrive still.

maandag 26 maart 2012

Bertrice Small – Betrayed

A stand alone novel, published December 27, 1997.


As the undisputed queen of sensual romance, Bertrice Small brings history to life through indomitable women who live with wit, intelligence, and courage and who love with fierce delight. Now she sweeps us to a time and place of fiery power struggles, where one woman holds the key to a country’s future – and to he own consuming passion.

When Fiona Hay offers Angus Gordon her virtue in exchange for a dowry for her sisters, she so intrigues the rogue that he demands a higher payment: She will be his mistress. Thus begins a battle of wills and sensual delights. Destiny soon draws the ardent lovers into the turbulent court of King Kames. But the king’s political schemes force Fiona away from the man she loves … and into the arms of a wild and passionate Highlander. The MacDonald of Nairn. Will this coldhearted and callous betrayal forever destroy Fiona’s chance at happiness?

For those of you, who would like to read an historical romance novel set in a different time period than the Regency or Victorian era, this novel starts in 1422 and follows the life of Fiona Hay for a couple of turbulent years of Scottish history. The time of King James I, and how he finally gains his throne and sets upon uniting Scotland. In the end of the book, there is a nice epilogue, and an explanation by the author in what ways she has bent history to make the book better readable.

For my new followers, from all the authors I love, I love Bertrice Small the most. I love everything she writes, no matter the genre. I love her writing style, her very strong heroines who never whine but do what has to be done, and survive. She has such a vivid description of what people wear, what they ate, and the politics of that time. Of course, it is the nobility that is focused upon, but the servants are certainly not forgotten and often have a strong secondary role in the books.

Usually I like my heroines a bit older, and in this book, Fiona is 15, and her sisters are 13 when they are married. For that time, that was normal, as are the pregnancies for those young girls. Fiona is no simpering and silly miss, or schoolgirl. She is independent, and has taken care of her family ever since her mother died when she was 8, and her father 2 years later.

To take care of her little sisters’ dowry, Fiona has to steal some cattle from her rich and mighty neighbour, as though she is the chieftain of her own clan, she is dirtpoor. And without a dowry, her sisters’ fiancé’s won’t have them. But unfortunately, she is caught, and Black Angus Gordon, the Laird of Bray, follows the cattlethief upon the Ben (mountain). When he threatens to take his cattle back, Fiona offers him the only thing of value she has: her maidenhead. Taken with the pretty and brazen lass, Angus agrees, but he wants her as his mistress. The bargain is struck, if Angus will also provide a dowry for her youngest two sisters, and help find them suitable husbands.
Angus and his men stay the night, for early the next morning, the husbands-to-be and their clansmen will claim the brides. Angus sends home for additional food and drink, so as not to shame Fiona in her hospitality. And when the marriages have taken place, and all the new family has left, Angus takes Fiona, her sisters and the 2 elderly servants home with him.
When his sister lectures him he should marry Fiona, as she is not a common girl, but a girl of rank, he refuses. Only if she tells him she loves him, will he marry her. But Fiona is stubborn, and won’t tell him that if he won’t say the words first. And so their battle goes on for 2 years. They really do love each other, and are happy together. And when the King comes home at last, Angus and Fiona travel to Perth to meet up with him and his new Queen, Joan. Angus spend a few years in England with the King while he was imprisoned there, and they are good friends. But the King is not ruled by his heart, but by his head. When he sees one of the Highlanders lusting after Fiona, he thinks up a ruthless plan. He needs a spy in the court of the Lord of the Isles, and Fiona is just what he needs. So he sends Angus on an errant to England, and manipulates Fiona in doing his bidding.

And so he separates Fiona and Angus, sending Fiona on her new destiny. But can she really spy on the MacDonalds if she gets to know them, and likes them? If Colin MacDonald of Nairn truly loves her, and wants to marry her, unlike Gordon who shamed her in front of the King and his court? And what is to become of her yet unborn child? She cannot let him be born a bastard. And will Angus just give her up, and marry an English lass as the King wishes him too?

As always, I loved this book. It is a stand alone novel, which is a rare thing these days. Fiona is a very strong girl, who grows up to be a very strong woman. She does what needs to be done, and she stands up to the King, when none of his Lairds dares to. King James is utterly ruthless, he will rule Scotland! I liked both men in Fiona’s life, both are larger than life, and love her. But honor is more important than love in those days. Honor, kinsmenship, loyalty to the clan, is more important than fealty to the King. And when nothing is forgiven or forgotten, how can there ever be peace in the Highlands?
Strong characters, strong secondary characters, a real lovestory against a historical background. And many hot lovescenes, as Bertrice Small is so good at those.

If you have never tried a Bertrice Small book before, you sure are missing something. Just try one. She has written some fantasy books, some erotica and lots of historical romances. But they all have the same amount of hot lovescenes in my opinion. She wrote erotica and romantica before the word was invented.

8 stars.

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zondag 25 maart 2012

Laura Childs – Scones & Bones

Book 12 in the Tea Shop Mysteries series, published March 2011 (but I always wait for the paperback to come out, a year later).

Scones and Bones

Indigo Tea Shop owner Theodosia Browning is lured into attending the Heritage Society's "Pirates and Plunder" show by her master tea blender. Amid the gold earrings and doubloons, an antique skull cup with a huge diamond steals the show – and gets plundered by someone who murders a history intern in the process. Even with that on her plate, Theodosia still has to attend Charleston’s Food and Wine Festival, where she’s hosting a tea and cheese tasting – the latest culinary trend. Theodosia knows she'll have to whet her investigative skills to find the killer among a raft of suspects…

Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop in Charleston, and her friend and master tea blender Drayton, are attending a party at the Heritage Society, focusing on pirates and their bounty. After all, the most famous pirate Blackbeard, Edward Teach, was known to roam the coast. Lots of treasures and odd things are displayed, ancient and original pirate flags, the Jolly Roger’s, with skulls and bones on them. Treasure chests with gold doubloon’s spilling out of them, but the focus point is truly unique, and grotesque. A human skull, made into a drinking cup, and with a large diamond embedded in it. And legend has it, it is the skull of Blackbeard himself!
Unfortunately, not many people are watching the display. Most of them came just to eat and drink and be seen. Theodosia and Drayton have just gone to congratulate Camilla and her new intern Rob on the splendid arrangement of the treasures, and are of to fetch some champagne themselves. Suddenly, a loud crash is heard, and the displays are plunged into darkness. When Theodosia and Drayton arrive on the scene, Rob and Camilla are struck down, and the skill has been stolen, the display case destroyed. Rob has been stabbed, and no matter how hard Theodosia tries to stop the bleeding, she cannot prevent Rob from dying. Camilla has been struck hard on the head, but she is taken to the hospital, and survives.

Timothy, the 80plus years old director of the Heritage Society, is in a near panic. His board of directors will want his head for this, and the Heritage Society is his life! And so he asks Theodosia to look into things, as the police have no clue at all. While Haley and the capable Miss Dimple take care of the Tea Shop, Theodosia and Drayton set out to find out more about the skull cup, and the legends involving the pirate. Are they really on a treasure hunt? At least there is no shortage in suspects, lots of people are interested in skulls and pirates. But who would kill for it?

Theodosia is disappointed that her not-serious-boyfriend cannot make it to her housewarming party, and is aware she has not thought about him for days. But there is also Max, a handsome man who works at the museum, and has taken an interest in her. And there sure is some heavy attraction between them. What is she to do about it? But when the two men meet, perhaps the solution is taken out of her hands, as Parker Scully seems to know what is happening.

Another great addition to this lovely series. If you like tea and well written cozy mysteries, I have no doubt at all that you will like this series. Laura Childs has such a great writing voice, I can picture myself in Charleston easily. The descriptions of everything, the houses (or rather, mansions), the gardens, the tea shop, the food, the people, it is all so vibrant. I totally love it. If I ever get the chance to go to America, this city is on my must-visit list.

I have loved Theodosia from the start of the series. A former marketing executive, who stepped out of the rat-race, and opened her own teashop, which was a long dream of hers. She could not have pulled it of without Drayton, who knows everything there is to know about tea, and where to buy the best, and Haley, who is a whiz in the tiny kitchen. The three of them keep coming up with new events to promote their teashop, and their catering business. I like that Theodosia is a somewhat older heroine, and I adore her dog, Earl Grey. He is a service dog, visiting the sick and invalids, bringing them some joy and therapy. Although not in this book. Drayton is also 60 something, dressed like a British gentleman, complete with bow tie. And Haley is just a young girl, constantly changing her major at college, but she can make the most marvellous dishes to be served in the teashop.
And among their hard work, murders get solved, but Theodosia does not always escape unscathed. And of course there is detective Tidwell, who is totally not happy with Theodosia sticking her pretty nose in his business.

Lots of other secondary characters who keep coming back in each book, so you get to find out more and more about them. I really like that.

And most important, I had no clue whatsoever about the murderer. I really thought someone else was behind it all. Which means it was a good mystery.

I am looking forward to the next book already, and learning more about this new love interest for Theodosia. I think she deserves something more than the loose thing going on with Parker Scully. And Max sure seems to be able to get her knees weak.

And for those of you who love to cook and bake, there are recipes in the back of the books. All the delicious things Haley serves in the Indigo Tea Shop.

9 stars.

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zaterdag 24 maart 2012

Thea Harrison - Oracle's Moon

The fourth book in the Elder Races series, published March 2012.

Oracle's Moon

As a second daughter, Grace Andreas never had to worry about the intrigues of the Elder Races. But when her sister, Petra, and Petra’s husband are both killed, Grace inherits the Power and responsibilities of the Oracle of Louisville, as well as her sister's two young children - neither of which she is prepared for.
Yet, she is not alone. Khalil, Demonkind and Djinn Prince of House Marid – driven by his genuine caring for the children – has decided to make himself a part of the household both as their guardian and as an exasperating counterpoint to Grace's impudence towards the Elder Races.
But when an attempt is made on Grace’s life, she realizes that Khalil is the only one who can protect her – and offer her more than any mortal man…

I have to admit, I was not feeling very well when I started reading this book, which is why it did not grab me from the beginning. But when I finally felt a bit better, I could not put it down. I so much liked Grace, how strong she is, and how she copes with everything. And then there is Khalil, immortal, incredibly powerful, extremely handsome, and how he discovers all kinds of new things and most importantly, feelings. He was cold and distant, but he really did love the children, and was drawn to Grace.
Grace was a normal college girl, and an athlete. Then one night, a truck driver rammed their car, and her sister and brother in law were death instantly. Grace herself was hurt very much, and will never be able to run again. She has inherited the Power of the Oracle from her sister, and also her little niece and nephew, and a big rambling house she cannot possibly upkeep herself. She is still recovering from her wounds, but the bills are piling up, the children need her constant attention, and she is getting used to have the Power of the Oracle reside inside of her. Luckily, the local witches’ covens are helping out with babysitting, when someone needs to consult with the Oracle. And they help her with doing community service in her house.

And then, suddenly, there is this powerful Djinn in her life, who won’t be kicked out of it again. He likes being with the children, reading to her little niece. Children are so rare for the Elder races, he is fascinated with those little ones. Grace bargains with Khalil for their protection when the King of the Vampires comes to the house with some questions, not realising that Khalil has already offered her his protection and that did not mean only one night. But Khalil will not tell her that, he just takes her bargain. After all, that is what Djinn do, and what they are so good at. Collecting favours, making bargains, and honouring those. When a Djinn negates to fulfil a bargain, he is honourless, and will be outcast. Their whole society is based upon that honour.

When the babysitting witch finds out that Grace is friendly with a Djinn, her whole attitude changes. Somehow, have a Djinn friend, is not done. Grace is upset with the attitude, but she won’t stop seeing Khalil because of it. She is falling for him, big time.
Unfortunately, that one witch is not alone in her disapproval of Khalil and Grace. The next work day, there are less witches to help with all the chores than promised before. And only one of those is friendly towards Grace. Something is off here, but she cannot understand what it is. And when she finds out, they have even gone into the Oracle’s cave without her presence or knowledge, she likes it even less. But still, she has to be grateful for all the work they have done to the house and yard. At least the children can play outside safely again.

Okay, not going to spoil what is happening next. Read the book, and find out for yourself. It really was bad, and awful. Racism at its worst.

Grace is a great heroine. She copes with everything as well as she can. Taking care of the children and their needs first, trying to finish with her studies, doing the housework. But the bills keep piling up, and she really does not have the means to pay them. She has to go look for a job as well, but who will look after the children then? She is a very strong and capable person, and you can’t help but to admire her. When Khalil appears in her life, and he wants to spend time with the children, it does not even occur to her to use him to ease her own life. Instead, she shares what little she has with him, and is grateful that he spends time with them all. As long as he follows her rules that is. After all, how is he to know what is good for a little human child, and what is not.
Khalil has had human lovers before, but he is not all that fond of humans. They all want things, and are deceivers. But he is drawn first to the children, and then to Grace, and her Power. Somehow, she can sense him when he is not corporeal, something no one has done before. She can feel the little thread that binds him to the house, and she can yank on it, summoning him to her. At first he is very angry with her for doing that, but later he wants her to use it, so he can protect her. But Grace is not a very obedient person; she is stubborn and doesn’t want to become dependent on anyone. Only for the sake of the children will she bend a little.

Conclusion: this book has a great hero and heroine. And then there are two sweet little children as secondary characters, who can and will act as buffers when needed. A good storyline with some Elder Races politics thrown in and some suspense as well. In this book, we learn something about the Djinn, and I am fascinated with them. But the most important part I think, are the emotions. Grace who still has to deal with her grief of losing her sister and brother in law, and Khalil who is getting to know emotions he has never experienced before.
I would like to explore more of the Power of the Oracle, and the premonitions Grace gets.

I liked this book a lot. For the characters, the story, the plot, the mystery and of course for the premise for the next book. It promises to be something big. Universal big.

9 stars.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

vrijdag 23 maart 2012

New additions to my addiction

I am finally reading the last book by Laurell K. Hamilton, Hit List, so soon I will be reading new books again, and struggling to write the reviews :) Oracle Moon and Angel’s Flight are some of the first ones that will be devoured.

The last week I have received some more of the books I have ordered in my February craziness. Still not all have arrived home safely. But I know they will, eventually, and if not, the Bookdepository has a really great helpdesk, and refunds or ships new copies easily.

I have already read the Ilona Andrews books, but felt the need to have them in paper as well, the same with the Ellery Adams books. I know, I am addicted to books.

Ilona Andrews – Magic Bleeds
Ilona Andrews – Magic Burns
Ilona Andrews – Fate’s Edge
Allison Pang – A brush of Darkness
Laurell K. Hamilton – Bullet
Laura Childs – Scones & Bones
Ellery Adams – A Killer Plot
Ellery Adams – A Deadly Cliché
Lorna Barrett – Bookmarked for death
Lorna Barrett – Murder is Binding
Lorna Barrett – Bookplate Special
Lorraine Bartlett – A Crafty Killing
Kate Collins - Dearly depotted
Kalayna Price – Grave Witch
Suzanne McLeod – The cold kiss of Death
Lynn Viehl – Nightborn

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

vrijdag 16 maart 2012

New additions to my addiction

Almost every day this week, my mood brightened when I got home, as the mailperson had delivered some new books to my house! Yay!

A gift from the ladies over at The Book Reading Gals-blog:
Erin Kellison : Shadowman; Shadow Bound and Shadow Fall.
Thank you so much! I know I will enjoy them!

And a few of the books I ordered on Bookdepository:
Anne Bishop - Twilight's Dawn
Ilona Andrews - Bayou Moon; Magic Bites and Magic Strikes
Kalayna Price - Grave Dance;
Shannon K. Butcher - Dying Wish
Darynda Jones - First grave on the right.

If I order complete series, why does it take so long for all the books to come home?

Some of those books I have read already, and will be shiny new on the shelves, others I am looking forward to reading :)

donderdag 15 maart 2012

Laurell K. Hamilton

Perhaps you have read about my love for the books by Laurell K. Hamilton before. I know the Anita Blake series is one you either love or hate, most often by the change in the books.

Anita starts of as Kick Ass, but a woman who is not into casual sex. And because of the bond that she gets with Jean-Claude, Master Vampire of the City of St. Louis, and the werewolf Ulfric Richard, she changes. She is a necromancer herself, helping the police in preternatural cases when she is not raising zombies. She is not afraid to shoot or use a knife, to kill and to defend herself of those she cares about. But being bound to Jean-Claude and Richard, makes her own magic that much stronger, but also gives her part of theirs. Without being a shapeshifter, she gets a part of Richard’s wolf, and she gets part of Jean-Claude’s incubus (by book 10 that is). And so her life changes, no matter how hard she fights it. So casual sex and sex often is introduced. But still, the overall storyline keeps fascinating me. The battle against bigger and badder vampires, to survive.
But truly, the writing style sucks me into those books, time and again. I do believe this is the 12th time I am reading them, and you all know how many great long awaited new books I have received lately.

I wanted to give you a taste of Laurell K. Hamilton’s writing style, what is possible my most favourite paragraph in the whole series. Out of Narcissus in Chains:

“We’re coming”, Rafael said. He looked across the seat at me. “Shall we”?
I nodded. “I guess it’d be silly not to get out of the car.” He slid out to the edge of the seat, then hesitated, holding his arm out for me. Normally, I wouldn't have taken it, but tonight we were trying for a show of solidarity and style. So I stepped out of the car on the rat king's arm, like a trophy wife - except for the wrist sheaths and the two folding knives hidden in my clothing. Somehow I think trophy wives wear more makeup and less cutlery. But, hey, I haven't ever met a trophy wife, maybe I'm wrong. Maybe they know what I know, that the true way to a man's heart is six inches of metal between his ribs. Sometimes four inches will do the job, but to be really sure, I like to have six. Funny how phallic objects are always more useful the bigger they are. Anyone who tells you size doesn't matter has been seeing too many small knives.

So, what do you say? Do you know those books? Do you like them? Hate them? Do you have a favourite piece of tekst of your own to share?

Today I got the newsletter, telling me about the next book to come out this summer, which will be the 21st in the series. And I am so much looking forward to it! O, there are some lesser books in here, like in all long series. But you have to take in account, this is one of the oldest series in the genre, the first book has been published in 1993.

To me, it is a 10 star series.

maandag 12 maart 2012

New additions to my addiction

To my surprise and happiness, I received some books today. Usually I don't get any mail on monday.
The long awaited Nalini Singh - Angels' Flight
Lorna Barrett: Sentenced to Death
Lorna Barrett: Chapter & Hearse
Laura Bickle: Embers
Laura Bickle: Sparks.

That last one is a new author to me, and I bought her books solely because of her nice Twitter conversations with Sullivan McPig, an other Dutch blogger. She really likes her books, so I decided to give it a try when I went totally overboard with my bookbyingbinge. So, let's hope I won't regret it :)

No reviews for a while, as I am still immersed in the Anita Blake world by Laurell K. Hamilton. Reading Obsidian Butterfly at the moment, book 9, and one of my favourites. Re-reading for the twelfh time makes it go very fast, as I am allowed to skip the parts I did not enjoy :)

vrijdag 9 maart 2012

New additions to my addiction

Finally the first few books of my February craziness have arrived. Still, I am missing my Nalini Singh book. And the strange thing is, my best friend who lives 10 minutes away, has received it (and some others) on Monday. The pre-order mails were send the same day. So, where is my copy???

But I am happy for now with the following books:
Ellery Adams - The last word
Ilona Andrews - Magic Slays
Lorraine Bartlett - The walled flower
Thea Harrison - Oracle's moon (Yeah!)
Lisa Kleypas - Rainshadow Road (Yeah!)
Kasey MacKenzie - Green-eyed demon
Kasey MacKenzie - Red hot furey
Suzanne McLeod - The bitter seed of magic
Allison Pang - A sliver of shadow

woensdag 7 maart 2012

Nora Roberts – Heart of the Sea

The third book in the Gallaghers of Ardmore series, published December 1, 2000. I so love this cover, it is really enchanting, and fitting the story.

Heart of the Sea

Darcy Gallagher has always believed in the pull of fate, the magic of legend … and the importance of money. She longs to find a rich man who will sweep her away – into a world filled with glamour and adventure, and the exotic life that is her destiny…
A wealthy businessman with Irish blood, Trevor Magee has come to Ardmore to build a theater – and uncover the secrets hidden in his family’s past. He thought he had given up on love long ago, but Darcy Gallagher tempts him like no woman ever has. She’s gorgeous, intelligent, and she knows what she wants – and he’s more than willing to give it to her. But as their mutual attraction flares into passion, they look into their hearts – and find out what happen when you truly believe …

Sometimes, I really am in the mood for a sweet romance. A Nora Roberts book is the perfect choice for that. This trilogy has a little bit extra though. If you add Carrick, a Prince of the Faeries, and his thwarted love story, and a ghost named Gwen to the mix, you are in for a lovely story.
Not going to repeat their story though, for that you have to read my reviews of the first two books in this lovely trilogy, called Jewels from the Sun and Tears from the Moon. Jewels and riches and glamour and passion he offered his love, and all she wanted was his heart…

Now it is time for the curse Carrick placed on himself and his lady love to be broken. Two couples have fallen in love already, Darcy Gallagher’s brothers. And now it is time for the third lovestory to unfold, for mortals to learn the real desires of their hearts, even when they don’t believe themselves capable of falling in love, of destiny, of faith.

Darcy wants to be rich, to travel, to bathe in luxury. She is very pretty and has an incredible voice, and she knows how to wind a man around her finger. If she enters a relationship, or flirts with a man, she is the one in charge, and everything happens on her terms. For now, she is working as a waitress in the bar named Gallaghers which she owns together with her two brothers. Aidan mans the bar, and Sean does all the kitchen work. He is a genius behind the stove, serving traditional Irish fare. With the new theater being build next to the pub, business will be even more brisk than usual, and Darcy really needs some help with the waittressing.

Darcy has just spend a week in Paris, something she has been saving money for, for a long time, and she enjoyed it very much. The elegance, the food, the museums, the shopping. She totally did not mind being alone. She loves going places, seeing new things. And now she is back home, in her rooms above the pub, when she is rudely awakened by the noise from the construction site. Going to her window, her eye falls on a very handsome men working with the concrete. What she doesn’t know is, he could be just the rich man she has been dreaming off.

Trevor Magee is a successful business man back in America, but his roots are Irish. His grandparents came from Ardmore, and he is curious about their background. They never were warm and loving parents nor grandparents, and he is lucky his own parents are all that and more. They support him, but never spoiled him, and he had to learn the building business from the ground up. Meaning, he can build a house by himself. He loves the process, and working a sweat, creating. Lately, he has been spending too much time in boardroom meetings. And when he sees a gorgeous darkhaired woman in the upstairs window, he is intrigued by her.

Trevor Magee has hired Brenna O‘Toole and her father as contractors to do the job, and he sure does not regret it. They are hard workers, and very good at what they do, and they know all the locals. Of course, hiring locals is a smart thing to do as well. There are even some distant cousins of Trev in his crew.

When Trev and Darcy first meet, and she agrees to go for a walk with him, Darcy has no idea who he is. She makes no secret of her wanting a rich man, to keep her in luxury, and is angry when she finds out later. She is also realistic, and she goes after what she wants. And for now, she wants Trev Magee. They both have never been really in love before. Trevor was engaged once, and he really wanted to love his fiancé, but in the end he just couldn’t and he was relieved when she broke it off herself.

A fling with Darcy for while he is in Ireland is just a thing for the moment; the passion between them flares high. And if she likes luxury so much, he sure can afford to give her some. Like a trip to London, while he has some business there, she can go shop or sightseeing. Darcy accepts, and has to rush to get a few other ladies to fall in for her in the pub. She is not about to let this chance go away. But she really is flabbergasted by the luxury way of travel, and of Trevor’s house in London. He even has a butler and a housekeeper! Their first lovescenes are very good. But their trip is cut short when Mick O’Toole falls from the roof of the new theater, and ends up in the hospital. Darcy is needed to be strong for Brenna, who has to be strong for the rest of her family, and Trevor needs to get back to supervise the work. But they both see a different site of the other, caring and loving for others.

Trevor is staying in the same cottage that Jude owns, and that Sean lived in in the previous book, when he finally fell for Brenna. And yes, he does encounter Gwen and Carrick, and doesn’t want to believe in them, nor in destiny. Will he make the same mistakes that Carrick has made, or will Darcy beat some sense in him after all?

I loved this third book, and closed it with tears running down my cheeks. I had forgotten the ending, but it was sooo good! I already liked Darcy, how she is bickering with her brothers, her bossy ways, but she has such a big heart, even though she doesn’t knows it herself. And Trevor Magee is sure the hero she needs, and not just because he is rich. I loved the bits with his parents, and with Carrick. He doesn’t keep that secret from Darcy, he just is too stubborn to risk his heart. Thinking to lure Darcy with money and a grand life.

Perhaps I have spoiled too much already, but I hope not. If you like your contemporary romances with a dash of the paranormal, books that can make you smile and cry, you really should read this trilogy. I think it is awesome. Lovely. Sweet. Just good.

There are many secondary characters, but the one I liked best, is old mister Riley. 101 years, with scores of great-great-grandchildren around him. Still spry and cunning, and enjoying his whiskey.

9 stars.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

maandag 5 maart 2012

Sherrilyn Kenyon – The Guardian

Book 21 in the Dark-Hunter series, published November 2011.

The Guardian

Dream-Hunter Lydia has been charged with the most sacred and dangerous of missions: To descend into the Nether Realm and find the missing god of dreams before he betrays the secrets that could kill her and her kind. What she never expects is to be taken prisoner by the Realm's most vicious guardian.

Seth's time is running out. If he can't hand over the entrance to Olympus, his own life and those of his people will be forfeit. No matter the torture, Seth hasn't been able to break the god in his custody. Then there's the beautiful Dream-Hunter Lydia: She isn't just guarding the gates of Olympus - she's holding back one of the world's darkest powers. If she fails, an ancient curse will haunt the earth once more and no one will be safe. But evil is always seductive...

This blurb doesn’t make any sense at all, once you have read the book. And I truly hate that.

I have read some very enthusiastic reviews about this book, but it took me some time to finish, as I am so very much disappointed by it.
A tortured hero, who is still sweet and loving, who keeps getting tortured and bla bla. He doesn’t trust anyone. But there is the heroine, coming to rescue her father, and he admires that. He keeps her safe from harm, and she falls in love with this wounded warrior. They escape, are hunted, he keeps her safe to be captured again himself. And she comes back for him, together with her father and friends and his family who have never come looking before in the 4.500 years or so he has been enslaved by Noir.

There is hardly any story here, no insight in why Noir and Azura keep him other than to drain his powers from him. What do they do with it? What do they want, other than rule the earth instead of their demonic realm? How come Lydia is the Key to Olympus? What does it mean? How did the “bad Greeks” find out? How did they know to torture Seth to find Lydia?

The only thing new in this book, the hero is an Egyptian half-god. The heroine is half Dream-Hunter and half Katagaria Jackal. And mute, until Seth gives her a voice in the first chapter of the book. I really do wonder if there is still an overall plot arc going on here. I can’t remember what it is al about.

I am really going to stop reading those books now. And yes, I know there will be movies and tv series about her books, and I probably will watch those if they are aired here in Holland.
But her recent books just are not as good as the first Dark Hunter / Were Hunter books.

5 stars (out of 10 that is!)

Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

zondag 4 maart 2012

Jennifer Estep – By a thread

The sixth book in the Elemental Assassin series, published February 28, 2012.

By a thread

When killing people is your job, there's no such thing as a vacation.

Then again, how often does an assassin live long enough to enjoy her retirement? In this line of work, you either get lucky or you get dead. And since I destroyed my nemesis Mab Monroe a few weeks ago, all of Ashland's lowlifes are gunning to make a name for themselves by taking out the lethal Spider - me, Gin Blanco. So I'm leaving behind my beloved barbecue joint and heading south with my baby sister, Bria, to cool my heels in a swanky beach town. Call it a weekend of fun in the sun. But when a powerful vampire with deadly elemental magic threatens an old friend of Bria's, it looks like I'll have to dig my silverstone knives out of my suitcase after all. Complicating matters further is the reappearance of Detective Donovan Caine, my old lover. But Donovan is the least of my problems. Because this time, the danger is hot on my trail, and not even my elemental Ice and Stone magic may be enough to save me from getting buried in the sand - permanently.

After killing Mab Monroe in the previous book, Gin thought it would be all over. But she was wrong. Every would-be-assassin who wants to make a name for himself, is now out for her. She is getting so tired of being attacked every single day, she finally accepts Finn’s proposal of going on vacation. It will give her a chance to become closer to her sister Bria. Gin is still feeling very guilty that Mab kidnapped Bria and tortured her, even though Gin rescued her in time. She promised to keep Bria safe, and she could not keep that promise. The fact that Bria is a police officer, and usually totally capable of protecting herself and others, doesn’t seem to be important. And of course Bria is not without strong Ice magic herself.
And so Bria and Gin set out to the place where Bria grew up, called Blue Marsh, a small city on an island near the coast of Georgia – South Carolina. Bria is very excited to meet up with her best friend again, who recently got engaged. Gin is feeling a bit jealous of the relationship the two women have, but she loves Bria and wants to do whatever she can to make her happy. Bria borrowed one of Finn’s latest cars, a beautiful old timer convertible. The boys will meet them there the next day.

After doing the tourist thing, Bria takes Gin to her friend Callie Reyes’ place, a small but busy restaurant called The Sea Breeze. The food is delicious, but things get a bit awkward when Bria hasn’t told Callie about Gin yet. And then some punks enter the restaurant, starting to cause trouble. And of course Gin cannot stand by and let innocents get hurt, especially if one of those is her sister! So she takes care of the problem, her style. And before the dust has settled, the next nasty surprise appears. Callie’s new fiancé is non other than her previous crush, Detective Donovan Caine. As it happens, Bria and Donovan know each other as well, as they swapped jobs a while ago, when Donovan wanted to leave Ashland and Gin, and Bria wanted to find her sister. To see him again is a real shock to Gin, even though she truly loves Owen and is happy with him. After all, Owen accepts who and what she is, something the moral loving Detective never could do. But apparently Donovan is not over Gin either.
After telling what happens, Donovan tells Gin, again, he doesn’t need her “help”, he and the law will sort this problem out.
Apparently some very old and powerful vampire is buying up pieces of the island to build a new huge resort and casino, and he needs Cassie’s place. Everyone who stands in his way ends up hurt, or dead. Cassie and Donovan don’t seem to understand the danger he proposes, or that he really with go to such lengths, but unfortunately, Gin knows different. And so she will not be unprepared. Those goons won’t stay in prison for long, and they will want revenge on her, and on Bria. And she is correct. Later that night, four of them enter their hotelsuite, bend on rape and murder. They did not count on meeting the Spider and her knifes though, and this time, Gin does not hold back. Before long, they are death, with Bria taking out the last one of them with her Ice magic. They cannot stay in the Resort any longer, but luckily Gin is always prepared, and has already rented a house somewhere else on the island.
So after taking care of the bodies, they leave. Unfortunately, the car has been smashed and slashed up, but they are still able to drive it. Finn will be furious over this! He sure loves his car collection.

And so, after telling the boys what happened, and where they can find them the next day, the meet for a late breakfast back at Callie’s place, and tell them what happened as well. Of course, Donovan already had an idea, when he was called in when four bodies where found in the hotel’s pool earlier this morning. Gin offers Callie to take care of the problem, or at least to warn the vampire off. But this time, Gin might be more cocky than she should be, as the vampire is way more powerful and devious as she thinks he is!

Another great story by Jennifer Estep. Gin is really eaten with guilt about her sister being tortured by Mab Monroe, and Bria is also not opening up to Gin. The honest cop, and the assassin, they will have to come to terms with each other. And when they did open up to each other, told what they were feeling, it was a great scene.
Of course, Bria sees from close up that the good guys don’t always win, and that the law is not always the answer, when the villain is above the law, or has bought the law. And when Gin steps up to the plate with Callie, without hesitation, or asking, it really makes her see Gin in a different light. And she will help in whatever way she can. And when Donovan gets on his high moral horse again, she sees things in him, she dislikes. Things she is guilty of herself as well.

Owen was very great in this book. He was not all that happy that Gin did not tell him, Donovan was here, but he did understand. And Gin has chosen for Owen, not Donovan. They spend some romantic time on the beach together, talking, and making love. Owen just has her back, and does not question her motives, he is there for her.
Lucky for Gin, Sophia and Jojo have come over from Ashland as well. Finn called them when he heard about the trouble they ran into. Finn and Bria are a hot couple together, and it is fun to see how the tough Bria likes how Finn treats her.

The book has a lot of action, but it is also more emotional, as Gin comes clear on her feelings for Bria, Owen and Donovan. I loved the ending of the book, and how they spend some time having a real vacation together, when everything was over.

I am, as usual, looking forward to the next book in this series, which keeps getting better and better.

9 stars

vrijdag 2 maart 2012

Suzanne McLeod – The sweet scent of blood

The first book in the Spellcrackers series, published April 27, 2008. My book has a different cover, I like it better than this one. I have won this book at “Housewife Blues and Chihuahua Stories Blog”, really nice blog worth visiting.

The Sweet Scent of Blood

My name is Genny Taylor. I work for It’s a great job, pays the rent, lets me do the thing I’m good at – finding magic and cracking it – and the bonus is, it’s run by witches, which stops the vamps from taking a bite out of me.
Not that vampires are the big bad any more, not since they launched a slick PR campaign – oh, and they brought the goblins on board. Now the vamps are sought-after celebrities, and Getting Fanged and taking the Gift are the new height of all things cool. But only if you’re human.
And I’m not.
I’m Sidhe Fae.
And I know firsthand just how deadly a vampire can be.

I had read the first three pages, when I knew this would be a good one. The writing style was really my kind of thing. The premise very interesting. So I got up, went to the computer, and ordered and pre-ordered the rest of the series. Well, I did have only 2 days left to profit from the discount at

This book certainly is an original. I loved it, even though I am a bit confused about certain things. The ending was very good, I did not expect it, and it was awesome. I’ll try to tell a bit of the overall story, without spoiling it. One of the best things, this book takes place in London, England, and not in the usual US of A. A really nice change of scenery. Not that I have ever been to London, but I will, someday in the future, and visit all those touristy places that also pop up in this story.

The world is filled with all kind of supernatural beings. Good and bad. But here we have trolls for police officers, and witches, vampires, brownies, naiads and all kinds of Fae. Our heroine Genny is Sidhe Fae, but that is only partly true. She is also half vampire, which makes life really difficult. If a vampire bites you, you get a virus in your blood, that makes you crave the next bite, thoroughly addicting you. Of course, you have to be of legal age before you can choose this destiny. And you have to be 21 before you can get The Gift, and turned into a vampire yourself. Of course, not many people do get The Gift, otherwise the world would be overrun with new vampires. To a vampire, the blood of the Fae is much tastier and more powerful than that of a normal human being, meaning that all the Fae are in danger of being “persuaded” to volunteer their blood. Lots of vampires are after Genny to become their bloodpet, but Genny wants nothing of it, her life and her blood are her own, thank you very much.

Genny works for a witches company, called Her work is to look for magic, and defuse it. Somehow absorbing the magic into herself. But she is not good at casting spells herself. She is working together with Finn, who is a satyr, and he really wants to have sex with Genny. But it is too dangerous for Genny to become close to him, as she is craving to bite him, and she cannot reveal her true self to anyone. There is a very old hostility between the Witches and the Vampires, and working for the witches, gives her a kind of sanctuary and protection from the vampires. If they kick her out, she has nowhere else to go.
So even though it is hard for Genny, she is keeping Finn at armslenght, but he is not the sort to take no for an answer. He keeps pushing her (which is something I dislike). Just because they are both Fae and can make some beautiful magic together.

The story starts with a vampire killing his human fiancée. The vampires’ human father wants to hire Genny to investigate the case, but she really doesn’t want to. Until he tells her something, something important from her past, and she is out of a choice. A Fae never breaks her word. But other parties are really not wanting her to investigate. A dark and dangerous vampire for instance, warns her to stay away. And hurts her in the process. But of course Genny is not a coward, and does not intend to give in to him.
At the police station there are a few less pleasant surprises waiting for her. Apparently, the victim’s mother doesn’t want her to look at her daughters body and has hired someone from a religious group called the Protectors of the Soul, or Soulers, to stake Melissa, meaning she will be cremated directly after that. As Melissa was under age, her contract with the vampires was not valid.
One of Genny’s oldest friends, Hugh, is a Goblin, working as a Sergeant. There is a female constable with an eye on him, a human, who totally dislikes Genny. Also a new female Captain, who is a witch. And apparently, the only way for Genny to meet with the accused vampire, is to agree to being a blood donor. She signs the form, without the intention of allowing things to go that far. But Roberto, the vampire in question, is an other old acquaintance, and memories are flooding both of them. But not in a good way. Genny doesn’t learn much from their conversation, and the constable is almost too late to safe her from Roberto (on purpose of course).
Then there are some more confrontations awaiting Genny, the Earl and some other vampires have come to the station. The Earl is some kind of leader of the London vampires. And he can totally bespell Genny, which should not be possible. He can stop time, freeze people. So suddenly, Genny is alone at the police station, and she has lost a few hours. The Earl does want her to find the spell that killed Melissa, and tell him all about it.
To crack this case, Genny will have to consort with a lot of vampires, something she really does not want to.

In case you think I have spoiled the whole book, no I did not. This is just the beginning and of course all the juicy details and surprises I have left out of this. The story is full of twists and turns and plots and different vampires with their own agenda. Who is a true friend, and who is not.

I did like Genny a lot. She is a strong heroine, and she can fight (and has to). I liked her friend Kate as well, Hugh is a very nice character, and the Goblins and their “secret greeting”. I for sure would like the story behind that. The world building is extensive, and original. And when you read as much (or more) as I do, original is great. And the biggest surprise of all, no love scenes. For me, that is a big plus, another refreshing change. Which does not mean they will not appear in the next book. There is something about Malik. I want to know more about him. And I have the feeling, he won’t let Genny be.
Lots of action, and a lot of characters I want to know more about. The vampire world is fascinating.

9 stars.

donderdag 1 maart 2012

New books to look forward to for March 2012.

Patricia Briggs – Fair Game – Alpha and Omega 3
Anne Bishop – Bridge of Dreams – Ephemera 3
Thea Harrison – Oracle’s moon – The Elder Races 4
Laura Childs – Agony of the Leaves – Tea shop 14
J.R. Ward – Lover Reborn
Marjorie M. Liu – Beacon in the Dark - Molly Beacon mystery 1
Susan Wittig Albert – Cats Claw – China Bayles 20
Anne Bishop – Twilight’s Dawn
Cherry Adair – Afterglow – Lodestone Trilogy 2
Jeaniene Frost – Once Burned – Night Prince 01
Lynn Viehl – Nightborn – Lords of the Darkyn 01
Suzanne Enoch – Taming an Impossible Rogue
Gail Carriger – Timeless – Alexia Tarrabotti 5
Sierra Dean – Deep Dark Secret – Secret McQueen 3
Jayne Ann Krentz – Tough Enough
Joanne Fluke – Cinnamon Roll Murder – Hannah Swensen 16
Kim Harrison – A perfect blood – Rachel Morgan 10
Sherrilyn Kenyon – Infamous – Chronicles of Nick 3

This sure is a great list. Of course, I have already enjoyed the new Sierra Dean book, as I won the ARC on Twitter. A few others are on their way home, if I can believe the pre-order confirmation emails I got from the Bookdepository.

Februari 2012 was a nice reading month, I found some real jewels. I have read 16 books and 4 novella’s. I have read only 2 books of my February list, which is an extremely low score, but most of those books have not reached my house yet, which is of course a valid excuse.

So, here is hoping for more reading time in March, and that the writing of my reviews will cost less time. The better the book, the harder it is to write a review about it.

Tell me please, are there any books on my list you are looking forward to as well?