Sunday, 8 November 2015

Dying for Keeps by Seleste deLaney

Greta Gallagher is TRAIT's secret weapon. With her uncanny ability to sense trouble before it even happens, she's an invaluable asset to the team and her partner, Nico Tancredi. Except that ever since she botched the last mission, her "gift" has been completely MIA ... and she needs Nico's help to find it again.

Nico has the ability to manipulate anyone except Greta. His challenge is to figure out how her mind works, without letting their attraction - unspoken and untried - get in the way. It does ... and it's more intense than either of them imagined. But deep in the waters of the Bermuda Triangle, a terrifying secret waits for them both. A secret that doesn't just threaten their love, but their lives ... and the very heart of TRAIT itself.

Release Date 9th November 2015

This is the final title in the TRAIT series and it's definitely one of my favourites. Although ask me to list them 1-4 and I'd have difficulty - I've honestly liked the entire series.

One thing I loved about this particular title is it doesn't use one of the most common romance tropes - one of the characters has a secret they're not telling the other and you just know the wronged party is going to find out and it'll cause tension between them that they'll have to work past. I hate that plotline and feel it gets way overused but thankfully not in this book.

Greta and Nico are determined to find the link between all the latest TRAIT cases and find out what's going on above TRAIT's head. The whole TRAIT agency works as a team to help and all the previous books get tied together. It's actually a nice ending to the series, there are no open endings and everything's finished up.

.....Except I still want my Marron story!

I've really enjoyed this series and am kind of sad to see it end even though deLaney has done a fantastic job at doing so. I recommend this series to anyone looking for some fun, short and sexy reads.

I listed all the sites I could think off the top of my head for buying
Amazon UK: Dying for Keeps
Amazon US: Dying for Keeps
Amazon Canada: Dying for Keeps
Amazon Australia: Dying for Keeps
Barnes and Noble: Dying for Keeps
Nook UK: Dying for Keeps
Kobo: Dying for Keeps
Google Books: Dying for Keeps
Entangled: Dying for Keeps

Previous titles in the series
Click the image to take you to my review

Pen Holloway's done with men - in real life. Guys in game are so much less drama. But when her partner from Heroes of Fallen Gods invites her to the convention of the year, she panics. What if he's another jerk? What if he's not?
Cal Burrows is living his dream of being a spy. One of TRAIT's misfit spies, but still a spy. It's the perfect job ... until an arms dealer with a taste for blood invades his not-so-secret geek haven. All Cal wanted from ConDamned was to meet his on-line girl. Now, with the threat of mass murder looming, he's forced to choose between keeping his mission a secret and protecting the girl of his dreams.
Despite their attraction, Pen can't help but suspect Cal's hiding something. She also can't shake the feeling he's not as much of a stranger as he seems.

Secret Agent Marissa Jones has a gift. A con artist to the core, after deep hypnosis she can turn into someone else entirely. Marisa's gift has gotten her into hot water over the years, but now more so than ever. With her smoking hot partner by her side, she needs to convince him that not only is she her true self, but also that she can be trusted - even in spite of her past.
Trevor Harris has his own issues with the mission, he's got revenge to seek, a cursed painting to secure, and Marissa's sugary-sweet alter-ego to ignore. But when he releases Marisa from her mental cage and things get a little too hot, he ends up finding out what falling for a con artist really means - bigger trouble than ever before.

Since her partner's death, Jodi Israel has been perfectly happy playing Q to everyone else's Bond. Electronics and machines are safer - and they are a lot easier to deal with. Unfortunately, she's stuck with TRAIT's newest recruit, an infuriating, arrogant alpha-male who plays by his own rules ... and is hot enough to send electric voltage through all of Jodi's circuitry.
Finn Danby heeds his instincts, even though it's cost him his job on more than one occasion. The moment he sees Jodi's fiery hair and uncanny engineering abilities, Finn's instinct takes over ... and it's all libido. Now they're working together to protect the unstable daughter of a high-profile politician - and the sparks are flying. Both in and out of the bedroom. But when all hell breaks loose, Jodi and Finn just may find themselves alone ... and unemployed.

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Mind Games by Jana Oliver

Riley Blackthorne's life as a Demon Trapper is about to hit the wall. Knowing she will always be a target for those who want to exploit her "connections" with Hell, she's learning defensive magic. It seems the only way to ensure she and her fiancé, Denver Beck, have a future together. But not everyone in Atlanta, or at the Vatican, is pleased by this news. In fact, some want to ban the use of all magic, and Riley would make the perfect scapegoat.

As a new demonic enemy stalks her, Guild politics roil the city, throwing the trappers into chaos. To protect herself and the man she loves, Riley will be forced to choose: continue in her legendary father's footsteps, or carve her own path. A path that may well lead to her losing everything she so desperately seeks to protect.

Yay, Riley and the gang are all back! I was so excited to read that Oliver was releasing a 5th book, it really is one of my favourite series and I've recommended it to a few friends. The first in the series is Forsaken, 2nd is Forbidden, 3rd is Forgiven, 4th is Foretold, 4.5 is Grave Matters. Although Grave Matters is really only a wee novella, I included it in the list since the story is relevant to Riley's future and therefore this book.

This time we see Riley having to deal with a long distance relationship with Beck as well as training her own apprentice demon trappers and having to deal with prejudices from other trappers about her learning magic.

Riley's really matured since the start of this series, which I believe is less than a year in the timeline. She's been through a lot in her wee life and had to deal with some serious shit so it's easy to see why she's matured so much. This world just gets scarier as we learn more about hell and the demons it spawns - and I have a feeling we still have a lot more to learn. At least I'm hoping that's the case since I'm hoping Oliver writes more, the story definitely didn't seem finished. In fact, it did seem like more story threads have been opened in this.

I can't say anything bad about this series, I adore it. The world that's been created, the characters in it and the writing style are all fantastic and I'll continue to recommend this series to anyone that I think will enjoy it - which should be anyone that likes to read.

Jana Oliver self-published this so make sure to support her (and hopefully gain more books) by buying it from a legit seller - I've tried to list as many as I could find below.

Amazon UK: Mind Games
Amazon US: Mind Games
Amazon Canada: Mind Games
Amazon Australia: Mind Games
Nook UK: Mind Games
Kobo: Mind Games
iTunes US: Mind Games

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Otherworld Secrets by Kelley Armstrong

This short story collection from internationally bestselling author Kelley Armstrong will feature tales about her witches and sorcerers - some of her most popular and fascinating characters. From Paige and Lucas to Savannah and her black witch mother Eve, these stories will enchant fans and new readers alike ...

Life After Theft
Karl Marsten has given retired as a thief so he can raise his daughter as an honest man, but someone wants to pull him back into it.
I enjoyed this, Karl's always a fun guy to read. The only thing that ruins it is Hope, she's my least favourite.

Morgan Walsh gets caught up in trouble as he's on his way to meet with the American pack and Elena & Clay have to go help him out.
A re-read for me, I bought the book from Subterranean Press when it was released. I like Morgan and it's fun to read from his POV.

Eve's angel duties get prolonged as she's called on by the Fates to help deal with a Djinn outbreak.
Another re-read of a Subterranean Press book. Eve's a fantastic character to head a book, she's kick ass and awesome.

Zen and the Art of Vampirism
Zoe uses her wits to handle a couple of vampires that want to take over her territory.
I loved Zoe from when we first met her in Broken, she just has a great voice and attitude.

The Ungrateful Dead
Jaime gets harassed by a ghost and gets help from Savannah to teach him a lesson.
I liked this one, I mean it was okay. I like Savannah but Jaime I can take or leave.

Counterfeit Magic
Paige and Savannah go undercover in a supernatural fighting ring to solve some unusual deaths.
Click here to read my review of Counterfeit Magic.

I love Kelley's work and I'm glad her short stories are being released as anthologies because I missed some of them when they were in multi-author books.
I recommend this to any fans of Kelley or the Otherworld but only if you've read previous books, there are spoilers.

Book Depository: Otherworld Secrets
Amazon UK: Otherworld Secrets

Sunday, 25 October 2015

The Masked Truth by Kelley Armstrong

Riley Vasquez is haunted by the brutal murder of the couple she was babysitting for.

Max Cross is suffering under the shadow of a life-altering diagnosis he doesn't dare reveal.

The last thing either of them wants is to spend a weekend away at a therapy camp alongside five other teens with "issues." But that's exactly where they are when three masked men burst in to take the group hostage.

The building has no windows. The exits are sealed shut. Their phones are gone. And their captors are on a killing spree.

Riley and Max know that if they can't get out, they'll be next - but they're about to discover that even escape doesn't equal freedom.

A brand new standalone from one of my favourite authors and I'm glad to say she didn't disappoint. This is a little different from what she's known for, although it'll be a hit with any Nadia Stafford fans.

Armstrong does a great job with her characters here. Riley has survivor guilt about the murder that happened while she was babysitting, people call her hero for saving the kid in the house but she feels like a coward.

Max and his mother moved to the US after he was diagnosed with a mental illness which he keeps secret from everyone - not even speaking up at group therapy sessions.

Armstrong is great at building up the suspense and making you really fear for Riley and Max. She also does a great job of basically leaving you on the hook until almost the last page. Of course I'm recommending it, I wouldn't do anything else with a Kelley Armstrong book.

Book Depository: The Masked Truth
Amazon UK: The Masked Truth

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Valiant Heart by Angela Addams

When the choice is love or loyalty, no matter what she chooses the heart will bleed. Slay the beasts. Save the day. Such is Ariana's role in her first mission for the Queen. She has no reason to think the rest will be any different ... until, in the heat of battle, she uses her powers to heal an injured Order Huntress. Her gift doesn't go unnoticed. Lance, her very own Hunter, zeroes in, and a different battle is on. Lance is hot and very attentive, but this Amazon is determined to stay independent.

Lance has prepared his whole life to battle alongside his mate. Now that he's found her, nothing and no one else matters. He's not letting her go. For the Queen's second mission — bring the Oracle into the tribe — Ariana risks taking Lance's bond to get more power. She never expected her body to crave more pleasure, her heart to lower its defenses. As the battle rages on between Huntresses and beasts, there's a foul plan in play that will force Ariana to decide where her loyalty lies. The cost of her choice could be a life.

Release Date 10th November 2015

I really, really did not like Lance, he is such a dick! In fact, I kinda feel sorry for Ariana being saddled with him - he totally puts down her beliefs and generally tells her she's wrong and he (and therefore the Order) is right.

So not being a fan of the lead male, I obviously didn't enjoy this one as I have some of the others in the series. I liked Ariana and the whole Tribe thing, I'm hoping we get to see more of them in the future - of course it's hard to tell who is right at this stage as so far it's kind of a he said/she said thing regarding the Order and the Tribe so I hope we get more back story with the whole Hunter/Huntress/Wolf thing.

I'm still looking forward to reading more of the series but I haven't enjoyed the last two books as much as others. Although as I stated in my review for Mayhem, it's kind of a hit and miss thing for me.

Amazon UK: Valiant Heart

Friday, 9 October 2015

COVER NEWS - The Flame Never Dies by Rachel Vincent

How pretty is this cover? I love it, and it really fits in with the first book, The Stars Never Rise.

When I first saw the cover for The Stars Never Rise I loved it and this is no different. I'm really looking forward to this one.

Previous covers in the series

Thursday, 10 September 2015

Led Astray by Kelley Armstrong

RELEASE DATE 15th September 2015

Two brand new tales anchor this wide-ranging collection from one of urban fantasy's most successful authors. Here is the first time that best-selling fantasy, YA, and crime author Kelley Armstrong has had her stories collected from Otherworld and beyond. With her signature twists and turns, Armstrong gives a fresh spin on city-dwelling vampires, werewolves, and zombies, while also traveling further afield, to a post-apocalyptic fortress, a superstitious village, a supernatural brothel, and even to feudal Japan.

With tales that range from humorous to heart-stopping, these are the stories that showcase Kelley Armstrong at her versatile best.

Rakshashi - a standalone story
Rakshasi are almost genie-like creatures that are tied to serving a family until they've atoned for their bad deeds during life. Of course, they don't exactly like this arrangement.

Kat - a Darkest Powers story
Kat and Marguerite are on the run from the Edison group but Marguerite is keeping something from Kat.

A Haunted House Of Her Own - a standalone story
A young couple buy a dream B&B - it's supposed to be haunted but that's what they want. The woman discovers maybe she's bitten off more than she can chew.

Learning Curve - an Otherworld story
An Otherworld based short featuring Zoe Takano who we met in Broken. Zoe discovers she's being stalked by someone.

The Screams Of Dragons - a Cainsville story
A Cainsville short where a young boy starts hearing the screams of dragons and haveing weird dreams. Then the Cainsville residents start treating him strange.

The Kitsune's Nine Tales - an Age of Legends story
A guard leads the Kitsune traitor to the Forest of the Dead. He's been warned about all his tricks along the way.

Last Stand - a standalone story
A virus outbreak means the recently dead are back, the dead and alive are at war. Our main character is a leader and fears for her group as the numbers are dwindling.

Bamboozled - an Otherworld story
A small group of people hunt down wanted criminals but everyone's in for a surprise with their latest hunt.

Branded - an Otherworld story
People live inside the Fortress for safety - outside are where the branded supernaturals live. A young mand and woman hatch a plan for leaving.

The List - an Otherworld story
Someone has made a list of vampires living in Toronto so Zoe goes to check the author out.

Young Bloods - an Otherworld story
A man realises there are two vampires on the train trying to intimdate people into confrontation but they don't realise who he is.

The Door - a standalone story original to this book
A young girl grows up learning to stay away from the door, only her dad is allowed to leave and comes back with food and toys. She always obeyed until the time came where she had to leave.

Dead Flowers By A Roadside - a standalone story
A man is haunted by visions of his wife and child. He keeps himself busy by fixing up the family car.

Suffer The Children - a standalone story
A village have recently lost all their young and elderly to disease so when two guys visit and claim to be able to bring them back, they agree.

The Collector - a standalone story
A puzzle solver takes part in an online puzzle that eventually leads her to an office for the last part - a puzzle box.

Gabriel's Gargoyles - a Cainsville story
A young Gabriel searches for all of Cainsville's garygoyles while also dealing with his mother.

Harbinger - a standalone story
A young woman is haunted by the spectres of drowned girls. She tries to talk to them, she tries to ignore them but they won't go away.

V Plates - an Otherworld story
Reese want to help Noah lose his virginity and asks Nick to help so they go to a brothel but it's not just an ordinary brothel.

Life Sentence - an Otherworld story
Daniel Boyd is dying so he uses his money and remaining time trying to find a way to stop it.

Plan B - standalone story
A man and his mistress hatch a plan to get his wife out of the picture but nothing goes as planned - always have a plan B.

The Hunt - a Cainsville story
A hunter decides to step up the hunting game and move up a level.

Dead To Me - a standalone story
A woman tries to stop her husband's ghost from haunting her home.

Devil May Care - a Cainsville story original to this book
Patrick only returns to Cainsville once in a blue moon and he learns of a prophecy when he's there so decides to avoid it all together.

I loved all these stories and a few of them were new to me either because I hadn't read the original anthology they were in or they're original stories just for this one.

I never have a bad thing to say about Kelley's work and I highly recommend this anthology whether you're new to her or a die hard fan like me. Although if you're new to her, some of these stories may be spoiler-ific or not make sense.

There were a lot of books I had on my Amazon wishlist purely because they contain a Kelley story that I've now been able to remove so ... bonus!

Book Depository:
Amazon UK: Led Astray
Amazon UK: Led Astray

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Country vs Country - The Hollows

(This one is ordered UK old, UK new, US until Black Magic Sanction then it's UK, US after)

Julie-Anne: I'm going to say here that I'm pretty much just going to be ignoring the old UK covers because they’re horrible. I've always hated them and actually have the US covers at home. I quite like the new UK covers, they're kind of similar to the US covers and don't have the gaudy, disgusting colours of the old UK ones. I think I'm going to go new UK on this one.
Danielle: Wow. The original UK covers are really something, aren't they! Sheesh. I never really cared for the US covers, though the first few weren't as bad as they later get. I like that Rachel has the charms hanging from her pocket. The new UK cover has really nice colours, and at least she isn't fully facing the camera. I think I'll go with the US here, but it's close.

J: Who is this on the UK cover? Been awhile since I read it, is it Rachel wearing a wig? Is it Ivy? It's not Ivy, her hair is shorter than this right? See what you've reduced me to mystery woman? I'm arguing with myself about your identity!! Anyway ... I choose US.
D: My first thought with the UK cover was Ivy. Though I feel like Rachel does wear a wig in this one (or one of them, at some point) so it's hard to say. I'm also going to choose US here, because of the full frontal on the UK, and because the US looks more ... witchy.

J: I have always loved this US cover, the boot and long coat are sexy as fuck! Although I do also like the background of the UK cover, but not that the model is full frontal. US again.
D: I don't know. I still don't like the old UK here, but I'm not loving the other two either. Both have qualities that I like, but I don't love either. I think I'll go with the US, because I love the statue in the background.

J: Oh! So the woman on The Good, The Bad and the Undead is Ivy? I never thought of her as having a bob, I always thought it was shorter like pixie style. Also, isn't she Asian? I like the UK cover but I always liked the dress on the US cover although I hated that it deviated away from the same style with the big banner for Harrison’s name. Saying that, I'm going with US. (I know I said I was going to ignore them but I always hated this old UK cover)
D: It's been so long since I've read these, but I feel kind of like that is how I pictured Ivy's hair. I can't remember for sure now. This was where I started disliking the US covers, because they changed at this book. I so dislike when publishers do that. Ivy looks like someone here that I can't place, and it's bothering me, since Ivy is Asian, and this girl ... isn't. I'll pick US, but I'll be honest, I don't hate the original UK cover here. I mean, it's definitely not Rachel, but the cover kind of makes me think of Trash Polka for some reason, and I think it's a really interesting style.

J: Who's the blonde woman? What the hell is with all these random women on the UK covers? I’m going with US again.
D: I was thinking the same thing. I can’t even try to guess who she is. Ohhhhh! Wait! Is she Ceri? She shows up in this book, doesn’t she? I’ll stick with US here though. Not much more to say about that.

J: And randomly, we have a different name for this book over here. When I first saw this book announced, it took me a while to find it. I don't understand why we have a different name, it's only this book. Again with the blonde chick, is it supposed to be red? But we've seen Rachel on other covers with actual red hair, is there a blonde chick that I can't remember? Know what? The UK covers make me ask too many questions! I'm still going US.
D: I'm thinking she must be Ceri, but why is she on the covers? I mean, she has a role in the books, but not enough to have several solos on covers. And what is with the name change? It's strange. I'm going to go with the girl on the original UK cover, and give that name two daggers down. US again, even though I really never liked these covers.

J: Oooh, the face on that UK cover! Why does she look so pissed? (Again, more questions!) And why is she smoking? The face looks way too photoshopped and fake. I always liked her outfit on the US cover, it's US again for me.
D: I'm not loving either UK cover, though I think I like the original cover better than the new. I'll go with US again too.

J: I love that the US has a wee gargoyle on it, and I love the moon behind Rachel. I do like the purple on the UK cover but I still don't like the model's pose or facial expression. US again.
D: Bis, right?! I liked him. I want to have a real gargoyle in my belfry. Of course, I'd need a belfry. US here, just because of Bis.

J: OK, how many models has there been for the UK covers? It seems like it changes all the time. And I'm obviously going US again, who wouldn't with that badass pose and the lightning. Love it.
D: I also am choo choo choosing US. The UK is full frontal, and it's just so plain. I don't love the US cover, but I like it better than the other.

J: Weird Ivy again. The US covers really seem to be more action based and seem more like Rachel than any of the UK covers. US again.
D: I do like this US cover. I do also like that they show her being witchy on the covers. Makes them more appealing.

J: Why is Rachel (or Ivy) always posed so seductively and sexy in the UK covers? I just don't like it. I like the US cover but it's first we've seen a full frontal and I don't think it looks like Rachel. Not a huge fan of either but I'm going with US because it's an action shot.
D: The US cover looks like a blonde girl. The reappearance of Ceri? I don't love either cover, but I'll choose US, just because she's far enough away that her face isn't super clear.

J: So we have the same image here for both covers just zoomed out and more background on the US one. I haven't read this far in the series yet so I'm going to guess the guy is Trent? I like this image, I'm going with US because it's the zoomed out view and you can see those awesome boots.
D: I assumed it was Trent the first time I saw this cover too. I also haven't read far enough into the series to know if it's him or not either. I don't like the full frontal, but the cover is cool. I'll go with US as well.

J: Again, same image but different backgrounds. For some reason they've changed the position of the guy and US has white while we have black. I don't get the reasoning behind that, if you're using the same image why not just make the cover the same? I'm actually going UK with this one purely because I prefer the black over the white.
D:I also prefer the black to the white here. I'm assuming that's Trent in the background again. The UK cover actually reminds me of the US Dead Witch Walking cover. Kind of like it went back to where it all began. I mean, really, there isn't anything really all that much the same, but it's what I thought of right away. I'll pick the UK cover as well.

Julie-Anne: I enjoy this series but I've fell behind. I think I lost a little love for it after we lost Kisten (loved him). Overall, I think US had the better covers - and UK tried twice! I much prefer the second set of UK covers over the first set but I'm glad I have the US covers ... even if it costs me more money in shipping to get them.
Danielle: I also lost interest in this series after Kist. I've read up to Black Magic Sanction. I keep thinking I'll get back to them, but I really lost interest after For A Few Demons More/The Outlaw Demon Wails. I didn't like the writing, I thought Rachel was far too whiney, and I just ... couldn't. A friend talked me into keeping going, and I'll admit I enjoyed Black Magic Sanction a lot more than the few before it, but I still never did get back to them. Maybe some day.