Posts filed under ‘Fantasy Romance’

Just finished reading…Beauty and the Werewolf by Mercedes Lackey

My review of Beauty and the Werewolf is up at Book Binge! Head on over and see what I thought.

Beauty and the Werewolf

And, while I’ve been pretty scarce lately on the blog, I’m still reading up a storm. Come visit me over at Goodreads for my latest reads. Also, I’ll continue posting reviews over at Book Binge.

Meanwhile, I’m knitting like crazy, getting ready for Christmas. Regular posts will resume in the New Year!

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December 15, 2011 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

March 2010 Book Releases

Wow! There are so many great releases this month. I’ve been thinking and plotting and planning how I can get my hands on all these great books without going broke!

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March 1, 2010: Shift (The Shifters series, book 4) by Rachel Vincent

Here is a book description:

ShiftTROUBLE IS IN THE AIR…
Being the first female werecat enforcer isn’t easy. Scars accumulate, but I’m stronger in so many ways.
As for my personal life? It’s complicated. Choices worth making always are. Ever since my brother’s death and my father’s impeachment, it’s all I can do to prevent more blood from spilling. Now our Pride is under attack by a flight of vicious thunderbirds. And making peace with our new enemies may be the only way to get the best of our old foe.
With the body count rising and treachery everywhere, my instincts tell me to look before I leap. But sometimes a leap of faith is the only real option.…

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March 1, 2010: The Dead Travel Fast by Deanna Raybourn

Here is a book description:

The Dead Travel FastA husband, a family, a comfortable life: Theodora Lestrange lives in terror of it all.
With a modest inheritance and the three gowns that comprise her entire wardrobe, Theodora leaves Edinburgh—and a disappointed suitor—far behind. She is bound for Rumania, where tales of vampires are still whispered, to visit an old friend and write the book that will bring her true independence.
She arrives at a magnificent, decaying castle in the Carpathians, replete with eccentric inhabitants: the ailing dowager; the troubled steward; her own fearful friend, Cosmina. But all are outstripped in dark glamour by the castle’s master, Count Andrei Dragulescu.
Bewildering and bewitching in equal measure, the brooding nobleman ignites Theodora’s imagination and awakens passions in her that she can neither deny nor conceal. His allure is superlative, his dominion over the superstitious town, absolute—Theodora may simply be one more person under his sway.
Before her sojourn is ended—or her novel completed—Theodora will have encountered things as strange and terrible as they are seductive. For obsession can prove fatal…and she is in danger of falling prey to more than desire.
  • Deanna Raybourn’s site.
  • Excerpt on author’s site.

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March 2, 2010: Catch Me if You Can (Romano and Albright series, book 1) by LB Gregg

Here is the description from the author’s site:

Catch Me if You CanLowly art gallery assistant Caesar Romano is freely out of the closet. Now he’d just like to get out of his Nana’s guest room. Everything — his reputation and his financial freedom — is riding on the success of tonight’s gallery opening. If only he could shake free of the past so easily.
A mysterious gatecrasher, Dan Green, looks like a promising addition to his pending new life — until Caesar’s ex shows up and suddenly the opening disintegrates into a half-naked dance melee. When the glitter settles, a missing sculpture of Justin Timberlake has Caesar up to his eyebrows in extortion, intrigue and a wild sexual adventure underneath, inside, and on top of a variety of furnishings.
As the cast of suspects piles up, so do the questions. Like who’s really blackmailing whom? And what does a stolen paint-by-numbers clown matter when Dan is so outrageously capable of blowing Caesar’s resistance to smithereens?
The fear of getting caught is half the fun.

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March 2, 2010: Something About You by Julie James. Excerpt on author’s site.

Here is the description from the publisher’s site:

Something About YouFATE HAS THROWN TWO SWORN ENEMIES. . .
Of all the hotel rooms rented by all the adulterous politicians in Chicago, female Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron Lynde had to choose the one next to 1308, where some hot-and-heavy lovemaking ends in bloodshed. And of all the FBI agents in Illinois, it had to be Special Agent Jack Pallas who gets assigned to this high-profile homicide. The same Jack Pallas who still blames Cameron for a botched crackdown three years ago—and nearly ruining his career…
. . .INTO EACH OTHER’S ARMS
Work with Cameron Lynde? Are they kidding? Maybe, Jack thinks, this is some kind of welcome-back prank after his stint away from Chicago. But it’s no joke: the pair is going to have to put their rocky past behind them and focus on the case at hand. That is, if they can cut back on the razor-sharp jibes—and smother the flame of their sizzling-hot sexual tension…

March 2, 2010: Roadkill (Cal Leandros series, book 5) by Rob Thurman

Here is a book description:

RoadkillNiko could have died because of her. I don’t forget things like that…not ever. I wanted a little payback for those she’d cheated in the past. For those she’d cheat in the future.
For what she’d allowed to happen to my brother.
For good old fashion revenge.
Once, while half-human Cal Leandros and his brother Niko were working on a case, an ancient gypsy queen gave them a good old-fashioned backstabbing. They barely made it out alive. Now, as their P.I. business teeters on insolvency, guess who shows up with a job?
The gypsy crone wants them to find a stolen coffin. Cal would rather help her into one, but this coffin contains an evil known as the Plague of the World–and it makes the Black Death seem like a fond memory.
But the thief has already left town, so the Leandros brothers are going on the road. And if they’re very, very lucky, there might even be a return trip…

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March 2, 2010: A Local Habitation (An October Daye Novel, book 2) by Seanan McGuire

Here is a book description:

A Local HabitationOctober “Toby” Daye is a changeling, the daughter of Amandine of the fae and a mortal man. Like her mother, she is gifted in blood magic, able to read what has happened to a person through a mere taste of blood.
Half-human, half-fae, outsiders from birth, most changelings are second-class children of Faerie spending their lives fighting for the respect of their immortal relations. Toby is the only changeling who has earned knighthood, and she re-earns that position every day, undertaking assignments for her liege, Sylvester, the Duke of Shadowed Hills.
Now Sylvester has asked her to go to the County of Tamed Lightning—otherwise known as Fremont, California—to make sure that all is well with his niece, January O’Leary, whom he has not been able to contact. It seems like a simple enough assignment—but when dealing with the realm of Faerie, nothing is ever as simple as it seems. January runs a company that produces computer fantasy games, and her domain is a buffer between Sylvester’s lands and a rival duchy whose ruler is looking for an opportunity to seize control. And that’s the least of January’s problems. For Tamed Lightning has somehow been cut off from the other fiefdoms, and now someone has begun to murder January’s key people. If Toby can’t find and stop the killer soon, she may well become the next victim…

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March 2, 2010: Shalador’s Lady (Shadow Queen trilogy, book 2)

Here is the description from the author’s site:

Shalador's LadyFor years the Shalador people suffered the cruelties of the corrupt Queens who ruled them, forbidding their traditions, punishing those who dared show defiance, and forcing many more into hiding. And even though the refugees found sanctuary in Dena Nehele, they have never been able to call it home.
Now that Dena Nehele has been cleansed of tainted Blood, the Rose-Jeweled Queen, Lady Cassidy, makes it her duty to restore the land and prove her ability to rule. She knows that undertaking this task will require all her heart and courage as she summons the untested power within her, a power capable of consuming her if she cannot control it.
And even if Lady Cassidy survives her trial by fire, other dangers await. For the Black Widows see visions within their tangled webs that something is coming that will change the land—and Lady Cassidy—forever…

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March 2, 2010: and Falling, Fly by Skyler White

Here is the description from the publisher’s site:

and Falling, FlyOlivia is a vampire bored with modernity. Tattooist, boyfriend, black-metal singer: everyone you don’t love tastes the same. Since the fall from Eden, she has hungered for love, but fed only on desire. Dominic O’Shaughnessy is a neuroscientist plagued by impossible visions.
When his research and her despair collide in Ireland’s L’Otel Mathillide – a subterranean hell of beauty, demons and dreams – rationalist and angel unite in a clash of desire and damnation that threatens to destroy them both.

March 5, 2010: The Dark Farewell by Josh Lanyon

Here is a book description:

The Dark FarewellDon’t talk to strangers, young man—especially the dead ones.
It’s the Roaring Twenties. Skirts are short, crime is rampant and booze is in short supply. Prohibition has hit Little Egypt, where newspaperman David Flynn has come to do a follow-up story on the Herren Massacre. The massacre isn’t the only news in town though. Spiritualist medium Julian Devereux claims to speak to the dead—and he charges a pretty penny for it.
Flynn knows a phoney when he sees one, and he’s convinced Devereux is as fake as a cigar store Indian. But the reluctant attraction he feels for the deceptively soft, not-his-type Julian is as real as it gets.
Suddenly Julian begins to have authentic, bloodstained visions of a serial killer, and the cynical Mr. Flynn finds himself willing to defend Julian with not only his life, but his body.
  • Josh Lanyon’s site.
  • Excerpt on publisher’s site. (Samhain)

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March 9, 2010: The Dead Tossed Waves (companion to The Forrest of Hands and Teeth) by Carrie Ryan

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Here is a book description:

The Dead-Tossed Waves by Carrie RyanGabry lives a quiet life. As safe a life as is possible in a town trapped between a forest and the ocean, in a world teeming with the dead, who constantly hunger for those still living. She’s content on her side of the Barrier, happy to let her friends dream of the Dark City up the coast while she watches from the top of her lighthouse.
But there are threats the Barrier cannot hold back. Threats like the secrets Gabry’s mother thought she left behind when she escaped from the Sisterhood and the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Like the cult of religious zealots who worship the dead. Like the stranger from the forest who seems to know Gabry. And suddenly, everything is changing. One reckless moment, and half of Gabry’s generation is dead, the other half imprisoned.
Now Gabry only knows one thing: she must face the forest of her mother’s past in order to save herself and the one she loves.

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March 16, 2010: Voices of Dragons by Carrie Vaughn (YA)

Here is the description from the author’s site:

Voices of DragonsOn one side of the border lies the modern world: the internet, homecoming dances, cell phones. On the other side dwell the ancient monsters who spark humanity’s deepest fears: dragons.
Seventeen-year-old Kay Wyatt knows she’s breaking the law by rock climbing near the border, but she’d rather have an adventure than follow the rules. When the dragon Artegal unexpectedly saves her life, the rules are abruptly shattered, and a secret friendship grows between them.
But suspicion and terror are the legacy of human and dragon interactions, and the fragile truce that has maintained peace between the species is unraveling. As tensions mount and battles begin, Kay and Artegal are caught in the middle. Can their friendship change the course of a war?

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March 23, 2010: Mind Games by Carolyn Crane

Here is the description from the publisher’s site:

Mind GamesJUSTINE KNOWS SHE’S GOING TO DIE. ANY SECOND NOW.
Justine Jones has a secret. A hardcore hypochondriac, she’s convinced a blood vessel is about to burst in her brain. Then, out of the blue, a startlingly handsome man named Packard peers into Justine’s soul and invites her to join his private crime-fighting team. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime deal. With a little of Packard’s hands-on training, Justine can weaponize her neurosis, turning it outward on Midcity’s worst criminals, and finally get the freedom from fear she’s always craved. End of problem.
Or is it? In Midcity, a dashing police chief is fighting a unique breed of outlaw with more than human powers. And while Justine’s first missions, including one against a nymphomaniac husband-killer, are thrilling successes, there is more to Packard than meets the eye. Soon, while battling her attraction to two very different men, Justine is plunging deeper into a world of wizardry, eroticism, and cosmic secrets. With Packard’s help, Justine has freed herself from her madness—only to discover a reality more frightening than anyone’s worst fears.

March 30, 2010: A Touch of Scandal (Calton series, book 2) by Jennifer Haymore

Here is a book description:

Touch of ScandalThe last thing Garrett, Duke of Calton, expects to find while tracking his sworn enemy is the delectable, mysterious Kate. This beautiful servant girl rouses a longing the battle-scarred ex-soldier had never hoped to feel again. But when she turns out to be the sister of the man he seeks, he’s convinced he’s been betrayed.
Kate knows her duty to her family, yet how can she ignore Garrett’s powerful pull on her heart? Or the heady temptation of his stolen-and sizzling-kisses? Scandal has followed the duke since the war. Now the greatest shock of all is on its way-the one that can separate Garrett and Kate forever.
  • Jennifer Haymore’s site.

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March 30, 2010: Changeless (The Parasol Protectorate, book 2) by Gail Carriger.

This blurb is full of spoilers for book 1, Soulless. Highlight text if you want to read it!

Here is a book description:

Changeless
Alexia Tarabotti, the Lady Woolsey, awakens in the wee hours of the mid-afternoon to find her husband, who should be decently asleep like any normal werewolf, yelling at the top of his lungs. Then he disappears – leaving her to deal with a regiment of supernatural soldiers encamped on her doorstep, a plethora of exorcised ghosts, and an angry Queen Victoria.
But Alexia is armed with her trusty parasol, the latest fashions, and an arsenal of biting civility. Even when her investigations take her to Scotland, the backwater of ugly waistcoats, she is prepared: upending werewolf pack dynamics as only the soulless can.
She might even find time to track down her wayward husband, if she feels like it.
  • Gail Carriger’s site.

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March 30, 2010: Silver Borne (Mercy Thompson series, book 5) by Patricia Briggs

Here is the description from the author’s site:

Being a mechanic is hard work. Mercy Thompson, for instance, just spent the last couple of months trying to evade the murderous queen of the local vampire seethe, and now the leader of the werewolf pack – who’s maybe-more-than-just-a-friend – has asked for her help. A book of fae secrets has come to light and they’re all about to find out how implacable – and dangerous – the fae can be. OK, so maybe her troubles have nothing to do with the job. But she sure could use a holiday …

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March 30, 2010: Instant Temptation (Wilder Adventures series, book 3) by Jill Shalvis.

Here is the description from the publisher’s site:

Instant Temptation
To Harley, the landscape around Wishful, California, is exhilarating, untamed, and more than a little dangerous. The same could be said for T.J. Wilder, who’s invited himself along on her trek to study a rare coyote. Harley’s career is riding on this trip, and she doesn’t need a stubborn, incredibly sexy distraction. But T.J. is a professional guide who knows when to stay back and when to provide invaluable expertise–just like he’s done since they were in high school. And Harley, as usual, is torn between throttling him and giving in to the raw attraction that’s been smoldering all these years.
T.J. knows how proud and capable Harley is, but he’s damned sure not letting her put herself at risk when there are illegal hunters in the area. She needs him, with the same soul-stirring urgency that he’s always craved her. And here, in this beautiful place days from civilization, he’ll finally have a chance to prove it–over and over again. . .

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It seems like blurbs were longer this month, doesn’t it?

I think this is the longest upcoming releases post I’ve ever done. However, I didn’t want to leave any of these releases out. There seems to be a good variety of genres here. Hopefully, there’s something here for everyone.

Did I miss any books coming out this month that you’re looking forward to?

For information on other future releases, check out my Upcoming Releases page. For information about other previously released books, check out my Released in 2010 page.

March 2, 2010 at 4:00 am 19 comments

2009 TBR Challenge (August): Enchanting the Lady by Kathryne Kennedy

This is August’s TBR Challenge review:

Enchanting the Lady (Relics of Merlin trilogy, book 1) by Kathryne Kennedy

This month’s theme is new authors and authors I haven’t read in a long time. I went with a new-to-me author, Kathryne Kennedy, because I kept hearing great things about her Relics of Merlin series, especially from Amy over at Romance Book Wyrm. Like me, Amy loves her fantasy with a big helping of romance, so I always am interested in her recommendations!

Now, this book isn’t actually owned by me, and hasn’t been sitting on my tbr shelf since last year (my usual criteria for the TBR Challenge.) However, it’s a library book that has been sitting on my shelf for so long that all the renewals were used up, and it’s last possible due date was fast approaching. For this reason, I felt it qualified for the TBR Challenge!

Here’s the book description:

In a world where magic ruled everything, Felicity Seymour couldn’t perform even the simplest spell. If she didn’t pass her testing, she’d lose her duchy — and any hope of marriage. But one man didn’t seem to mind her lack of dowry: a darkly delicious baronet who had managed to scare away the rest of London’s Society misses.

Sir Terence Blackwell knew the enchanting woman before him wasn’t entirely without magic.  Not only could she completely disarm him with her gorgeous lavender eyes and frank candor, but his were-lion senses could smell a dark power on her — the same kind of relic-magic that had killed his brother.  Was she using it herself, or was it being used against her?

One needed a husband, and the other needed answers.  But only together could they find the strongest magic of all: true love.

Enchanting the Lady
This book was a quick, easy read. I’m used to fantasy (even fantasy romance) being much more heavy in the world building department and tone of the book, so at first I was surprised at how “light” it felt. The book doesn’t spend a lot of time at the beginning setting the stage, rather it just jumps in with the story. In tone it felt much more like a light historical romance than it did a fantasy novel, and once I readjusted my genre expectations, I felt I could sit back and enjoy the story.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that the world in Enchanting the Lady is given short shrift. It’s unique setting and society were really interesting. I loved how it is a blend of Victorian society and a magic-based aristocracy. The weres are an underclass, both feared and looked down upon by the ton.

Felicity really reminded me of the old-school Regency and Victorian heroines that I used to read in my teens (remember Barbara Cartland, anyone?) It made her familiar, but at least for me, not too relate-able. She was very much the sweet, innocent, ingenuous heroine. I rooted for her, but she never felt completely real to me, because she was always so sweet and kind. I wanted her to get mad, yell at someone, lose her temper, to show some more dimension, but it never happened.

Sir Terence, otoh, was all broody intensity. I have a weakness for shifters, especially cat-shifters, so he was definitely my cuppa. I really enjoyed seeing him fall for Felicity, despite himself. He was in such denial, yet everytime he saw her, it was obvious he was just falling deeper in love with her.

The mystery of the relic-magic was well done, and kept me guessing, even when I was sure I knew what was going on. (I was wrong.)

At the end, there were a couple of issues that I felt weren’t really addressed or resolved. I can’t discuss them without spoilers, so highlight the following text at your own peril:

SPOILER  SPOILER  SPOILER  SPOILER (Highlight area to read.)

When Felicity decides to not pursue reclaiming her title, it really bothered me for two reasons: 1.) that she seemed to assume  she would be able to “fix” Terence’s feelings of social inferiority by not out-ranking him, and 2.) that (as she tells Prince Albert) she “only wants to be her husband’s wife.” While probably a historically accurate view for the time period, it wasn’t one that helped me with my problems relating to Felicity. Also, neither of these reasons really addressed Terence and his own feelings about their respective social positions. I would have liked more to have been resolved for him on this issue.

END SPOILER

However, in the end there was enough of Enchanting the Lady that I did enjoy, that I will probably get around to reading the rest of this trilogy.

  • Kathryne Kennedy’s site.
  • Excerpt for Enchanting the Lady.

August 19, 2009 at 5:00 am 8 comments

Amy & Renee chat about . . . The Shadow Queen

For ages (well, months, actually) Amy, from Romance Book Wyrm, and I have been wanting to do something together. We both love fantasy, romance, and fantasy-romance. So, when Anne Bishop’s new Black Jewels Novel came out, it was clear which book we would read and chat about!

The Shadow Queen (A Black Jewels Novel) by Anne Bishop

Here is the book description:

Dena Nehele is a land decimated by its past. Once it was ruled by corrupt Queens who were wiped out when the land was cleansed of tainted Blood. Now, only one hundred Warlord Princes stand — without a leader and without hope. Theran Grayhaven is the last of his line, desperate to find the key that reveals a treasure great enough to restore Dena Nehele. But first he needs to find a Queen who remembers the Blood’s code of honor and lives by the Old Ways. The woman chosen to rule Dena Nehele, Lady Cassidy, is not beautiful and believes she is not strong. But she may be the only one able to convince bitter men to serve once again.

The Shadow Queen by Anne Bishop

Renee: So, Amy, why did you want to read this book? Did it fulfill your expectations?

AmyC: The reason for wanting to read this book is quite simple, Anne Bishop wrote it! I have read all her books. And it’s the next book in her Black Jewels world. I very much enjoyed Shadow Queen. Considering I read a few reviews before reading, it did meet my expectations regarding the lack of complete focus on a a new plot and new characters.

Renee: I’m also a fan of the Black Jewels trilogy. Anne Bishop’s world is so original and unique. What you say about reviewers have said about this book. I went into it completely ignorant of the “buzz” on the book. However, I had been really disappointed in Tangled Webs, the last book set in this world. I was really hopeful, though, for this one after reading the excerpt.

What did you think about the SaDiablo storyline?

AmyC: Parts of the SaDiablo storyline worked because it enhanced the main storyline between Cassidy and her relationship with Gray. I think it could have been cut short. There was a turn of events regarding Saetan toward the end that I thought strayed way too far. It really had nothing to do with any part of the story. I don’t think we needed to “see” Saetan in a situation like that. We know what he did if you read Dreams Made Flesh, and I think it was sufficient. I didn’t necessarily mind the added insight into Daemon and Jaenelle, but I would have preferrred it have been taken out of the story and added as a short bonus at the end. I just think carrying on with Daemon and Jaenelle the way it was done in this new set of books is taking away from the new characters that I found to be very intriguing.

Renee: I totally agree with you about the story line that deals with Daemon, Janelle and Saetan. While I was happy with an appearance, giving them such a prominent secondary storyline took away from page time which could have been used on the main characters. I liked that they were there as supporting cast, asking Cassidy to step in as Dena Nehele’s Queen and advising Theran and Grey. But, when they started having their own drama, I kept wanting to return to Cassidy.Medieval castle detail

And, yes, a short “bonus” story at the end that focused on this other SaDiablo story line would have been great!

AmyC: I loved the main storyline. All the gardening and working the earth totally worked for me! I really like the idea that these new Black jewels books are focusing on the after-affects of the devastation and cleansing of the Blood from the original trilogy. Seeing how Dena Nehele suffered and now is becoming whole once again. And I liked that it is connected to The Invisible Ring! You’re getting something new, yet you’re still with all the same characters you’ve grown to love over the years.

One thing that kinda bugged me was how the SaDaiblo’s treated Gray, Cassidy and Theran, like they were all children! The dinner scene was a bit much for me. I felt like I was reading about a couple of ten year olds trying to get along. But otherwise, I LOVED all the scenes with Cassidy and Gray, and cannot wait to read more about them in Shalador’s Lady.

Renee: I also loved that sense of rebuilding, after the events of the trilogy. Cassidy’s and Gray’s connection to the earth and how intrinsic it was to the rebuilding of society was very cool. I actually missed reading The Invisible Ring (which concerns events in Dena Nehele a few generations earlier when Dorothea was still in power.) But now, after reading The Shadow Queen, I totally want to get it, though it’ll probably be in audiobook, since I’m really curious about how it will work in that format.

You know, the paternalistic attitude toward Gray, Cassidy and Theran didn’t really bother me. I think that’s mostly because the entire world is really hierarchical, both with regards to the Blood’s relation to the Landens and in turn the Blood’s relation to the Queens (and then Janelle as WITCH and Saetan as the High Lord of Hell.)

AmyC: I see where you’re coming from and it was pretty much the dinner scene that made me think more into other scenes. Before the dinner scene I hadn’t given it much thought, I don’t know, something about that scene that just rubbed me the wrong way :) !

Renee: However, I never completely bought Cassidy and Gray’s romance 100%. Part of that was that they simply didn’t have enough page time together. If there had been 100 more pages, focusing on them, I’d have been much happier. Especially, because I really did like Cassidy’s struggle to become Queen of Dena Nehele and win the hearts of her court. But also, while I liked Grey, I never really bought him as a hero. And, he’s totally a tortured hero (one of my favorite hero-types,) having been kept for 2 years by some of Dorothea’s Queens, and tortured/traumatized so badly he’s been emotionally and psychologically stunted to the age of an adolescent. It’s wonderful how he blossoms with Cassidy, while they work together in the garden. But the romance would have worked for me so much more if there had been more time with them as he heals and “grows up”. We didn’t really get to see him (or them together) in that “after” portion, which I really needed for the romance aspect of the book.Fairies Woods

I’m really not unhappy with the book, I just wish there was more of it, I guess, because so much of it really worked for me.

Actually, to me the most interesting character (after Cassidy) was Theran. I really thought he was going to be the hero for a lot of it. He was such a prickly guy, who kept making an ass of himself, yet I understood where he was coming from. His guilt and sense of responsibility toward Gray, and feelings of failure and frustration for his land really made me want to see him grow and mature as a character. I really really hope we get to see more of him in the next book.

All in all, while I had some issues with The Shadow Queen, it was a definite “thumbs up” for me. A real return to what I really love about the Black Jewels novels.

Do you know what the next one, Shalador’s Lady is going to be about?

AmyC: I’m figuring the relationship between Cassidy and Gray isn’t over yet. I assume that Shalador’s Lady will explore more into what started between them. I think this is going to be another trilogy based around Cassidy and the rebuilding of Dena Nehele, as well as the relationship with her and Gray. And since I figure this book only touched on the relationship between Cassidy and Gray, I don’t feel like there was anything missing. I really enjoyed the innocent scenes between them in the gardens! There is still a lot of healing for Gray and I think we’ll see much more of that in the next book. I believe Gray is much more important. I think he is going to be part of her first circle as her consort. But he has to heal more first, before he can take on that responsibility. I had a feeling the whole time reading that Theran would not retain his position as first escort once the year agreement expires. That’s my hopes anyway :) . I don’t know what is going to happen, but I feel something is going to change within the structure of Cassidy’s first circle to allow Gray to take the position of Consort.

floral columnI’m really curious to see what Shalador’s Lady will be about. I can speculate. The Shalador people have been repressed for I don’t know how long, so Cassidy will have that to deal with and their healing. I don’t recall if in The Invisible Ring there was mention of the Shaladors being forced to live on reserves and why. Definitely going to reread that one soon!

One thing I’m not sure about is where this new series is going, other than the healing of Dena Nehele. In the original trilogy it was all about Jaenelle and her being Witch and her coming of age to bring the Old Ways back to the land. It was powerful and unforgettable. I didn’t gather anything powerful building in this one, so I wonder where it’s headed.

Overall, I agree with you, a great start to a likely new trilogy. I would say to keep that in mind, this book is just the first one. So if things didn’t feel like there was enough, it will likely be explored more in the next few books. What I do hope for in Shalador’s Lady is to stay more focused on the new characters and let the original ones take a firm back seat! As much as I love them, their place is in the original trilogy, and one that will likely ALWAYS be my favorite trilogy! I don’t want them to hinder and take away from some really great characters like Cassidy, Gray, Talon, Theran, Shira, and Ranon! Cassidy still has some personal healing and growing to do, as well as Gray and Theran. And I can’t wait to see more of it unfold in Shalador’s Lady.

Renee: Oh, I feel so much better now that you’ve said that! It makes a difference to know that this is the first book in a trilogy (like the Black Jewels Trilogy) and not just a stand alone novel set in the Black Jewels world (like Tangled Webs.) I totally didn’t realize that. I can be more patient since that’s the case, and hope there will continue to be some development for Gray!

I’ll also be looking forward to Shalador’s Lady, as book 2 of this new trilogy.
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  • Anne Bishop’s site
  • Excerpt for The Shadow Queen.
  • Anne Bishop also has an excellent, informative FAQ page about the very complex Black Jewels world.

It was so wonderful to chat with someone who is so knowledgeable about this series.

Thanks, Amy!

June 4, 2009 at 3:00 am 18 comments

May 2009 New Releases

I’m a little late getting this post out, but things have been so hectic lately, that I’ve been a little too brain-dead to post. I’m really excited about May’s releases, and have already requested quite a few of them from the library. The tricky part will be to remain patient while waiting for them to come in! 🙂

Here are May’s releases:

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May 1, 2009: Blood from Stone (Retrievers series, book 6) by Laura Anne Gilman

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

Wren Valere’s job is driving her crazy. She’s still Manhattan’s most sought-after Retriever, but after last year’s deadly confrontation with the Silence, all this magic-user wants is a break. With her apartment going co-op and her relationship with the demon P.B. putting stress on her romance with partner Sergei, is Wren finally ready to settle down to a more stable existence?

Not likely.

Because when you’re good, trouble always finds you. Wren’s next assignment puts her on the wrong side of a child-snatcher — and a collision course with her past. But to save a friend—and protect her future — Wren must pull off the most important Retrieval of her life . . . and for once magic isn’t on her side.

Blood from Stone by Laura Anne Gilman
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May 5, 2009: Hard and Fast (Fast Track series, book 2) by Erin McCarthy

Here is a book description from the publisher’s site:

An experiment in romance…

New to Charlotte, stock car racing country, graduate student Imogen Wilson meets Ty McCordle, a driver who inexplicably has her pulse racing.  After an encounter at the track with a woman whose main goal in life is to marry a driver, Imogen realizes she’s hit on the perfect thesis for her Sociology degree. If she follows The Rules on how to get a man, can she steer her way to into the hearts of the drivers and establish their dating—and mating—patterns?

That’s testing the limits of passion.

Although sexy and reckless Ty is the ideal test subject, she knows she can’t pursue him for the sake of science. Yet he’s the one who’s chasing after her, and Imogen realizes that she actually wants to be caught. A southern gentleman like Ty won’t fail to disappoint, will satisfy all her curiosity—and make all the risks worthwhile…

Hard and Fast by Erin McCarthy
  • Erin McCarthy’s site.
  • Excerpt for Hard and Fast (scroll down page.)

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May 5, 2009: Dead and Gone (The Southern Vampire series, book 9) by Charlaine Harris

Here is the description from the author’s site:

Except for Sookie Stackhouse, folks in Bon Temps, Louisiana, know little about vamps—and nothing about weres.

Until now. The weres and shifters have finally decided to reveal their existence to the ordinary world. At first all goes well. Then the mutilated body of a were-panther is found near the bar where Sookie works—and she feels compelled to discover who, human or otherwise, did it.

But there’s a far greater danger threatening Bon Temps. A race of unhuman beings—older, more powerful, and more secretive than vampires or werewolves—is preparing for war. And Sookie finds herself an all-too human pawn in their battle.

Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris
  • Charliane Harris’ site.
  • Excerpt on publisher’s site.

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May 5, 2009: Daring Time by Beth Kery

Here is the description from the publisher’s site:

He sees her, wants her, needs her…

Chicago Detective Ryan Daire has many secrets: a love for Shakespeare, an appreciation for the all the finer things in life, and an absolute lack of restraint in the bedroom. Now he has an even bigger secret. In every shifting shadow of the sprawling mansion he’s recently inherited he can see her—tempting, ethereal, and untouchable. Hope Stillwater inhabited that mansion in 1906. Raw desire has formed a conduit between these two passionate souls who are separated by the barrier of time.

Now he has to have her.

Intoxicated by each other’s presence, Ryan and Hope are closer than ever to crossing that inviting boundary between two worlds. But there is one grave danger: Ryan’s job has put him on the trail of a depraved criminal in an investigation that’s risking Hope’s eternal fate and happiness. Now he must do whatever it takes to change history, protect Hope from harm, and set his own desires free.

Daring Time by Beth Kery

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May 5, 2009: Darkborn (Darkborn trilogy, book 1) by Alison Sinclair

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

For the Darkborn, sunlight kills. For the Lightborn, darkness is fatal. Living under a centuries-old curse, the Darkborn and the Lightborn share the city of Minhorne, coexisting in an uneasy equilibrium but never interacting. When Darkborn physician Balthasar Hearne finds a pregnant fugitive on his doorstep just before sunrise, he has no choice but to take her in. Tercelle Amberley’s betrothed is a powerful Darkborn nobleman, but her illicit lover came to her through the daytime. When she gives birth to twin boys, they can see, something unheard of among the Darkborn. When men come for the boys, Balthasar is saved by the intervention of his Lightborn neighbor — and healed by the hands of his wife, Telmaine. Soon he finds himself drawn deeper into political intrigue and magical attacks, while Telmaine must confront a power she can no longer keep sheathed in gloves, a power she neither wants nor can control.

Darkborn
  • Alison Sinclair’s site.
  • Excerpt on publisher’s site.

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May 14, 2009: Strange Angels by Lili St Crow (YA)

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

Dru Anderson has been “strange” for as long as she can remember. She travels from town to town with her father, hunting the things that go bump in the night and eat the unwary. It’s a weird life, but a good one–until it all explodes and a zombie busts into her new house. Alone, terrified, and trapped in an icy town, Dru’s going to need every inch of her wit and training to stay alive. Can she trust the boy who is just a little too adult–and just happens to get bit by a werwulf? Or the strange blue-eyed boy who tells her she’s heir to a long-forgotten power? Can she even trust her own instincts?Because Dru is not the first in her family to be killed by the darkness of the Real World. The monsters have decided to hunt back–and now Dru has to figure out who to trust, who to fight, and when to run. And not incidentally, she has to figure out how she’s going to get out of this alive.

And she has to do it in the next 24 hours, or it’s all over…

Strange Angels by Lili St Crow
  • Lili St Crow’s site.

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May 26, 2009: Dead Once, Twice Shy (Madison Avery series, book 1) by Kim Harrison (YA)

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

Everyone does it. Dies, I mean. I found this out for myself on my seventeenth birthday—which also happened to be the night of my prom—when I was killed in a car accident. It was a carefully planned scything, just a small moment in the battle between light reapers and dark, heaven and hell, choice and fate.

My name is Madison Avery, and I’m here to tell you that there’s more out there than you can see, hear, or touch. Because I’m seeing it, hearing it, touching it, living it.

Once Dead Twice Shy
  • Kim Harrison’s site.
  • Excerpt on on author’s site (scroll down.)
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May 26, 2009: My Forbidden Desire (My series, book 2) by Carolyn Jewel

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

Torn Between. . .
Alexandrine Marit is a witch in mortal danager. An evil mage craves the powerful, mysterious talisman that supplies her magic, and the only person who can keep her alive is a dark and dangerous fiend called Xia. With his fierce animosity toward witches, he’s hardly the ideal bodyguard. Yet as days turn into nights, she can’t deny the white-hot passion between them.

Desire and Temptation . . .
Xia hates witches. They enslave and mercilessly kill his kind. But he’s been ordered to protect Alexandrine, who, to his surprise, has a spirit he admires and a body he longs to possess. With the mage and his henchmen closing in, Alexandrine and her protector must trust the passion that can unite them . . . or risk losing everything to the enemies who can destroy them both.

My Forbidden Desire by Carolyn Jewel
  • Carolyn Jewel’s site.
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May 26, 2009: Tekgrrl (Elite Hands of Justice series, book 2) by AJ Menden

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

When she was 12, Mindy asked to go to The School like other gifted girls. Her parents sent her to another planet. Today, Mindy’s back on Earth. She’s a mechanical genius with the Elite Hands of Justice, America’s premier superhero squad. She’s been having headaches though, and it’s not just because her longtime crush is flirting with another teammate. It’s not because she’s pushing thirty. It’s also not because of the contrary actions of former teammate Simon Leasure. No, what’s burning her brain is a past she can’t remember, a past that has been erased. It’s a memory surging closer – in flying saucers. Her worst nightmare is returning, big time, and only she, her friends, and her one true love can stop it.

Tekgrrl by AJ Menden
  • AJ Menden’s site.
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May 29, 2009: Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

Loup Garron was born and raised in Santa Olivia, an isolated, disenfranchised town next to a US military base inside a DMZ buffer zone between Texas and Mexico. A fugitive “Wolf-Man” who had a love affair with a local woman, Loup’s father was one of a group of men genetically-manipulated and used by the US government as a weapon. The “Wolf-Men” were engineered to have superhuman strength, speed, sensory capability, stamina, and a total lack of fear, and Loup, named for and sharing her father’s wolf-like qualities, is marked as an outsider.

After her mother dies, Loup goes to live among the misfit orphans at the parish church, where they seethe from the injustices visited upon the locals by the soldiers. Eventually, the orphans find an outlet for their frustrations: They form a vigilante group to support Loup Garron who, costumed as their patron saint, Santa Olivia, uses her special abilities to avenge the town.

Aware that she could lose her freedom, and possibly her life, Loup is determined to fight to redress the wrongs her community has suffered. And like the reincarnation of their patron saint, she will bring hope to all of Santa Olivia.

Santa Olivia by Jacqueline Carey
  • Jacqueline Carey’s site.
  • Excerpt on author’s site.
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For information on other future releases, check out my Upcoming Releases page. For information about other books that were released in January thru April 2009, check out my Released in 2009 page.

Did I miss any books coming out this month that you’re looking forward to?

May 6, 2009 at 6:00 am 16 comments

March 2009 Book Releases

Spring is coming, and along with it, a number of books I’ve been looking forward to! Also, it seems that a number of them have simply beautiful covers!

Here they are:

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Silent on the Moor by Deanna RaybournMarch 1, 2009: Silent on the Moor  (A Lady Julia Grey Mystery, book 3) by Deanna Raybourn.

This is the third installment of the Lady Julia Grey series. These books are wonderful historical mysteries with a hint of romance. 

Here is a book description from the author’s site:       

Despite his admonitions to stay away, Lady Julia arrives in Yorkshire to find Brisbane as remote and maddeningly attractive as ever. Cloistered together, they share the moldering house with the proud but impoverished remnants of an ancient family — the sort that keeps their bloodline pure and their secrets close. Lady Allenby and her daughters, dependent upon Brisbane and devastated by their fall in society, seem adrift on the moor winds, powerless to change their fortunes. But poison does not discriminate between classes . . .

A mystery unfolds from the rotten heart of Grimsgrave, one Lady Julia may have to solve alone, as Brisbane appears inextricably tangled in its heinous twists and turns. But blood will out, and before spring touches the craggy northern landscape, Lady Julia will have uncovered a Gypsy witch, a dark rider and a long-buried legacy of malevolence and evil.

I’ve got high hopes for Lady Julia’s and Brisbane’s relationship to finally move forward. Their sexual tension has been sizzling for the last 2 books, and I can’t wait to see what happens in book 3.

Deanna Raybourn also writes a heck of a mystery, with lots of twists and turns, and I’m also looking forward to seeing Lady Julia’s character continue to grow.

  • Deanna Raybourn’s site.
  • Excerpt on author’s site.

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Second Skin by Caitlin KittredgeMarch 3, 2009: Second Skin (Nocturne City series, book 3) by Caitlin Kittredge

I’m behind on this series (book 2 is on my TBR shelf), but hopefully, that means I can read books 2 & 3 back to back.

Here is a book description from the author’s site:               

When werewolves from Nocturne City’s oldest packs start showing up shot through the head execution-style, police officer Luna Wilder must find out what’s killing them and why…before she becomes the next victim.

Luna traces the killings to a band of shapeshifters made of smoke and shadow who drink the blood of their victims for strength. Believed to exist only in legend, their race is all too real—and now their leader, Lucas Kennuka, is out to wrest Luna’s heart from her beloved Dmitri. To make matters worse, Dmitri is suffering from a mysterious illness brought on by a demon bite, and his condition grows more grave with each passing day. Now Luna must rely on Lucas to defeat an invisible enemy—a serial were-killer bringing death and destruction to all who stand in its path . . .

I love the shifters, and Luna is as tough as they come. Dimitri is seriously alpha-y and hot (I still remember a love scene from book 1, which I read a year ago!)

  • Caitlin Kittredge’s site.
  • Excerpt on author’s site.

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As Shadows Fade by Colleen GleasonMarch 3, 2009:  As Shadows Fade  (The Gardella Vampire Chronicles, book 5) by Colleen Gleason

Colleen Gleason’s historical urban fantasy series is a fun, original, and sexy. Victoria has often been called a Regency-era Buffy, and in a lot of ways its true: she kicks-ass, wears great clothes, hunts vampires, and has two sexy guys vying for her affections.

Here is the description from the author’s site:

Directly descended from the very first vampire hunter in the Gardella family, Victoria knows she must continue the lineage so humanity will have protectors against the undead.

While Sebastian Vioget appears to be both the perfect warrior and lover to ensure the Gardella Legacy, Victoria cannot forget Max Pesaro – the former slayer still haunted by the vampire queen Lilith’s obsession with him.

But it is Lilith’s obsession that may save all of humanity. Demons, enemies of both mortals and the undead, have found their way to earth. To defeat them, vampires and slayers must fight side by side. But Lilith wants Max in return for her cooperation — a small price for the world, but too high a price for Victoria.

Sebastian is such a mystery and so passionate about Victoria, but I can’t help rooting for the brooding Max. I’m currently reading book 4, When Twilight Burns, and can’t wait to continue the series with book 5. ETA: I didn’t realize at the time of writing this, that As Shadows Fade is the conclusion to this series.

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Deathwish by Rob ThurmanMarch 3, 2009: Deathwish (Cal Leandros series, book 4) by Rob Thurman

Rob Thurman’s protagonist Cal and his brother Niko remind me a lot of the Winchester brothers from the TV series, Supernatural. Cal has the same snarky sense of humor as Dean, and no matter how much the brothers might give each other shit, they always have each other’s back. Cal and Niko’s deep loyalty to each other really makes this series much more than smart ass wisecracks and violence. (Though there’s a lot of both of these things.)

Here is the description from the author’s site:

In a nightmarish new york city, life is there for the taking…

Half-human Cal Leandros and his brother Niko are hired by the vampire Seamus to find out who has been following him — until Seamus turns up dead (or un-undead). Worse still is the return of Cal’s nightmarish family, the Auphe. The last time Cal and Niko faced them, they were almost wiped out. Now, the Auphe want revenge. But first, they’ll destroy everything Cal holds dear…

I always look forward to a new Cal Leandros novel. Rob Thurman consistently delivers an absorbing urban fantasy novel with a smart sense of humor and great characters.

  • Rob Thurman’s site.

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The Shadow Queen by Anne BishopMarch 3, 2009: The Shadow Queen (A Black Jewels novel) by Anne Bishop.

I love the Black Jewels trilogy for it’s incredibly original world, and dark, sensual men.

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

Dena Nehele is a land decimated by its past. Once it was ruled by corrupt Queens who were wiped out when the land was cleansed of tainted Blood. Now, only one hundred Warlord Princes stand — without a leader and without hope.

Theran Grayhaven is the last of his line, desperate to find the key that reveals a treasure great enough to restore Dena Nehele. But first he needs to find a Queen who remembers the Blood’s code of honor and lives by the Old Ways. The woman chosen to rule Dena Nehele, Lady Cassidy, is not beautiful and believes she is not strong. But she may be the only one able to convince bitter men to serve once again.

Honestly, the last Black Jewels novel, Tangled Webs, was a disappointment for me, but I have high hopes from the description of The Shadow Queen, that it’s a return to the things I love about Anne Bishop’s Black Jewels world.

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Angels' Blood by Nalini SinghMarch 3, 2009: Angels’ Blood (A Guild Hunter Novel, book 1) by Nalini Singh

Isn’t this book cover gorgeous? It’s one of my favorite covers of books coming out this year.

This new series is by the author of the Psy-Changeling series.

Here is the book description:

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux knows she’s the best — but she doesn’t know if she’s good enough for this job. Hired by the dangerously beautiful Archangel Raphael, a being so lethal that no mortal wants his attention, only one thing is clear — failure is not an option . . . even if the task is impossible. 

Because this time, it’s not a wayward vamp she has to track. It’s an archangel gone bad. 

The job will put Elena in the midst of a killing spree like no other . . . and pull her to the razor’s edge of passion. Even if the hunt doesn’t destroy her, succumbing to Raphael’s seductive touch just may. For when archangels play, mortals break . . .

The Guild Hunter world sounds original, and Nalini Singh sure knows how to write great characters. The author has also written a prequel novella, Angels’ Pawn, currently available in ebook format.

  • Nalini Singh’s site.
  • Excerpt on author’s site (scroll down.)

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Smooth Talking Stranger by Lisa KleypasMarch 31, 2009: Smooth Talking Stranger  (Travis family series, book 3) by Lisa Kleypas.

Last year, my favorite contemporary romance read was Lisa Kleypas’ Sugar Daddy. In Smooth Talking Stranger, she revisits the Travis family. (Book 2, Blue-Eyed Devil was also an amazing read.)

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

Ella Varner has it all — a successful career as an advice columnist, a handsome boyfriend, and a circle of friends in Austin. When anyone has a problem, Ella knows the answers.

But one night she receives a call that changes everything. And as Ella’s world is turned upside-down, she meets a man who is the opposite of everything she ever wanted . . . a man who will offer her the most irresistible challenge she has ever known . . .

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The Treasure Keeper by Shana AbeMarch 24, 2009: The Treasure Keeper (Drakkon series, book 4) by Shana Abe

This historical paranormal romance series is highly romantic and very sensual. This was the only book description I could find, and it’s super long, so I’ll let it speak for itself.

Here is the book description:

With such novels as Queen of Dragons and The Dream Thief, Shana Abé has created a unique and vividly imagined world that exists side by side with our own — a realm populated by a race of supersensual men and women whose power to change shape permits them unlimited acts of pleasure.and ever-present danger. Now the survival of the drakon rests in the hands of a young woman with untried and unexpected powers — and the powerful Alpha male she must break every drakon law to save.

The drakon are at war, surrounded by an enemy they have every reason to fear. The sanf inimicus are no ordinary human beings but the most dangerous of hunters. They’ve sworn to exterminate the shape-shifters whose presence they now can detect, and they’ve already claimed a prize prisoner: Lord Rhys Langford.

It’s a blow the drakon clans feel from Darkfrith, England, all the way to the Carpathian Mountains of Transylvania. But it strikes no one harder than Zoe Cyprienne Lane. A mere seamstress’s daughter, Zoe isn’t even in the same league as Rhys. In fact, as an unwed male in the Alpha line, according to drakon custom, he owns her. So nothing could be more outrageous — or personally ruinous — than the mere notion that she might set out on her own to find her childhood friend . . . and first true love.

But the unexpected is exactly what Zoe intends to do. For years she’s been hiding two extraordinary Gifts that have set her apart from other drakon females: the power to become invisible and the power to feel others’ emotions. Now, guided by a link to Rhys — his presence and touch as electric as if he were beside her in the flesh — Zoe uses both Gifts to infiltrate the sanf inimicus. And for Rhys, whose time is running out, Zoe is his last lifeline to a world — and a love — he never thought he’d regain. Only together again, hunter and huntress, can they save the drakon from the traitor in their midst who would destroy them all.

  • Shana Abé’s site.

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City of Glass by Cassandra ClareMarch 24, 2009: City of Glass (Mortal Instruments trilogy, book 3) by Cassandra Clare (YA)

While I had some frustrations with book 2, City of Ashes, it did redeem itself in the end, ans I am looking forward to the final installment of the Mortal Instruments trilogy.

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

To save her mother’s life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters — never mind that enter-ing the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight. As Clary uncovers more about her family’s past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadow-hunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadow-hunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he’s willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City — whatever the cost?

Love is a mortal sin and the secrets of the past prove deadly as Clary and Jace face down Valentine in the final installment of the New York Times bestselling trilogy The Mortal Instruments. 

I really like Clary, and have been rooting for her and Jace though the series.

  • Cassandra Clare’s site.
  • City of Glass excerpt (scroll down.)

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Magic Strikes by Ilona AndrewsMarch 31, 2009: Magic Strikes  (Kate Daniels series, book 3) by Ilona Andrews.

As much as I like Kate Daniels, and her snarky sense of humor, for me it’s mostly about Lord of the Beasts, lion-shifter Curran.

Curran is all alpha male, and is the leader of all the shifters in the Atlanta area. The chemistry Kate and Curran have together sizzles off the page, and over the course of the last 2 books, Ilona Andrews has built the sexual tension between them to a boiling point.

Here is a book description from the publisher’s site:

Drafted into working for the Order of Merciful Aid, mercenary Kate Daniels has more paranormal problems than she knows what to do with these days. And in Atlanta, where magic comes and goes like the tide, that’s saying a lot.

But when Kate’s werewolf friend Derek is discovered nearly dead, she must confront her greatest challenge yet. As her investigation leads her to the Midnight Games — an invitation only, no holds barred, ultimate preternatural fighting tournament — she and Curran, the Lord of the Beasts, uncover a dark plot that may forever alter the face of Atlanta’s shapeshifting community . . .

In book 2, Magic Burns, the simplest scenes between Kate and Curran became fraught with repressed meaning. My favorite scene was where he brings her a meal after she’s been injured. It was such a simple scene, yet there were so many unspoken layers to it. The series is full of great writing, like that. 

  • Ilona Andrews’ site.
  • Excerpt on author’s site (scroll down.)

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Seven for a Secret by Elizabeth BearMarch 31, 2009: Seven for a Secret (Lady Abigail Irene and Sebastien) by Elizabeth Bear

This short novel is a sequel to the steampunk/historical urban fantasy New Amsterdam.

New Amsterdam is a collection of short stories about vampire, Sebastien, and magical investigator, Lady Abigail Irene, in a steampunk world where the US never won its independence from England.

This novel continues Sebastien’s and Lady Abigail Irene’s story, many years later.

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

The wampyr has walked the dark streets of the world’s great cities for a thousand years. In that time, he has worn out many names — and even more compatriots.

Now, so that one of those companions may die where she once lived, he has come again to the City of London. In 1938, where the ghosts of centuries of war haunt rain-grey streets and the Prussian Chancellor’s army of occupation rules with an iron hand.

Here he will meet his own ghosts, the remembrances of loves mortal — and immortal. And here he will face the Chancellor’s secret weapon: a human child.

Author Elizabeth Bear is co-author of my February Re-read Challenge book A Companion to Wolves. Her world building is detailed, original and fascinating, and I can’t wait to read more about her unique characters.

  • Elizabeth Bear’s site.

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Night's Rose by Annaliese EvansMarch 31, 2009: Night’s Rose (Night’s Rose trilogy, book 1) by Annaliese Evans

Another gorgeous cover!

I don’t know where I saw this book, but the cover immediately drew me, and I was hooked after reading the description and excerpt.

Here is a book description from the author’s site:

For nearly one hundred years, Rosemarie Edenberg has worked tirelessly to wipe the dreaded ogre tribe from the earth. Now the tribe has gathered in London to work a spell that will destroy the scourge of their kind, the one they call the Briar Rose.

Two magnetic men will unite to aid Rose — her mysterious fey advisor, Ambrose, and the vampire Lord Shenley, an earl of scandalous reputation and even more scandalous appetites. One will save her, one will betray her, and both will challenge her to face the past that haunts her.

Once upon a time, she was ensnared in the mists of enchantment, cursed to sleep one hundred years. But this beauty wasn’t awakened with a kiss and has never known happily ever after. But with the help of her handsome allies, Rose may find it yet.

This is a new to me author, but I have high hopes for this novel, which is the first of a trilogy.  The second book, The Prince of Frogs will be out September 2009.

  • Annaliese Evan’s site.
  • Excerpt on author’s site.

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For information on other future releases, check out my Upcoming Releases page. For information about other books that were released in January and Febuary 2009, check out my Released in 2009 page.

Did I miss any books coming out this month that you’re looking forward to?

March 2, 2009 at 7:00 am 12 comments

Ahhhhhhh . . .

I think I know why Tracy, over at Tracy’s Place has “ahhhhhromance” as part of the URL for her blog.

Today it’s rainy outside, and I’m still getting over my cold. After taking the kid to school, all I could think about was crawling back under the covers and reading this:

Instant Attraction by Jill Shalvis

I have laundry to do, and I have a book club book I should be reading (we meet on Sunday, and I haven’t even started it!) But instead, all I can think about is escaping for a while to the mountains with Katie and Cameron (IA’s protags) while I enjoy the warmth of goose down and flannel sheets. 

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Just finished reading . . .
Driven by Eve Kenin

Driven by Eve Kenin

This book had so much good about it, but I had one REALLY big issue that makes me doubtful I’ll read the next in the series.

The good stuff: the post apocalyptic world was original and interesting; the action was interesting and fast-paced; and, Wizard was a great hero (he reminded me a lot of Judd in Nalini Singh’s Caressed by Ice—a man who had not been allowed/taught to feel or express emotion, yet it’s there, just under the surface).

Unfortunately, for about the first 2/3’s of the book, I wasn’t feeling the connection between Raina and Wizard. There was a lot of talk about how they felt connected to each other or were fighting their connection to each other, but not enough time (IMO) was spent with them actually being together when they weren’t getting shot at or chased.

Maybe I’m reading too much romance? 😛

I mean, I’m wondering if my expectations in the “relationship development” department are changing because of the increasing amount of romance I’ve been reading over the last year. I’ve come to really enjoy reading about the hero/heroine encountering each other,verbally sparring or just sharing their experiences. But with Driven,  there was no “there,” “there” for me, until the final 1/3 which improved a lot for me.

I’d actually consider reading the second book if Raina and Wizard were the protagonists in it, because their relationship did capture my imagination by the end of the book, and I really wanted to see them being together. Unfortunately, however, the next book, Hidden, moves on to another couple. Oh well.

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Don’t forget!

Today is the last day to enter your name for my giveaway for a signed copy of Patricia Briggs’ Moon Called, book 1 of the Mercy Thompson series. Comment to this post before midnight tonight, February 13, 2009, for your chance to win.

February 13, 2009 at 10:33 am 14 comments

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A little bit more about me.

Renee's book recommendations, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

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Now reading…

Pleasure and Purpose

Pleasure and Purpose (Order of Solace, book 1) by Megan Hart

Now listening to…

Feed

Feed (Newsflesh trilogy, book 1) by Mira Grant Audiobook narrated by Paula Christensen and Jessie Eisenberg

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A FEW BOOKS FROM THE PILE…

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Can’t hardly wait!

September 20, 2011:
Tempted by His Target
Tempted by His Target by Jill Sorenson

October 4, 2011:
Angels of Darkness
Angels of Darkness with stories by Meljean Brook, Ilona Andrews, Nalini Singh, and Sharon Shinn

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