woensdag 28 april 2010

Alexis Morgan - Defeat the Darkness

My lunchbreak was over, just when it got exciting (as usual), so I finished the last 10 minutes of this book in the bus on my way home. This is the 6th book in the Paladins of Darkness series.

Defeat the Darkness

Hard-eyed and hard-bodied, Hunter Fitzsimon isn't what Tate Justice expected in a tenant for the apartment above her garage. Terse and intensely private, Hunter's mission is to protect a narrow stretch of the barrier between Earth and Kalithia against the Paladins' ruthless enemies -- a job that would be much easier without his sexy landlady nosing around. So when she follows Hunter into the woods late one night, he decides to teach Tate a lesson with a passionate kiss that brings her to her knees...and unexpectedly ignites red-hot desire deep in his soul. But the warrior's dark and dangerous world is no place for his fiery lover. Does possessing Tate mean turning his back on his brethren...or will Hunter forsake the woman of his dreams for the harsh duty he's always known?

Hunter has been tortured to death in the previous book in this series. He is recovering, and still has a bad leg. And of course the memories haunt him. He can’t stand to be inside much, or be touched. So he left Missouri and the few friends he has there, to come to a little town near Seattle, where he is assigned a small piece of the barrier, to keep watch at.

He finds an appartment to rent, but didn’t count on his landlady to be young and attractive and paying way too much attention to him. So he tries to keep Tate at arms length, but not really succeeding in that. He is kind to the aunties M, mows their lawn in exchange for cookies.

But where does he go at night when he walks into the woods? Does he know the path is treacherous, even in daylight and even when you have two good legs? So Tate follows him, to warn him. And that is when he finds the first clue the traitors are really near his little stretch of the barrier. That they have used this cave for a long time, going by the camping gear and the footprints inside.

So when Tate finds him just when he spots the strangers, he knows only one way of shutting her up: kissing her senseless.
When back up arrives, he is irritated when DJ flirts with Tate, even when he tells himself there is nothing between them, nor can there ever be. The next time he dies, he probably won’t come back sane. And there will be a next time, as a Paladin cannot live without the barrier, and the fights with the Others that are part of that life (and death).

But when Tate safes his life one night, and sees him come back from the death, he has no choice but to tell her everything, which, of course, se does not believe. She kicks him out of her life, but cannot forget him. And in the end, it is Tate who finds out who the traitor is … and Tate whose life is in danger …

maandag 26 april 2010

Amanda Quick - Burning Lamp

I enjoyed this second book in the Dreamlight Trilogy series set in the world of the Arcane, very much. I always love Amanda Quick’s historical novels.

Burning lamp

The Arcane Society was born in turmoil when the friendship of its two founders evolved into a fierce rivalry. Sylvester Jones and Nicholas Winters each sought to enhance their individual psychic talents. Winters' efforts led to the creation of a device of unknown powers called the Burning Lamp. Each generation the Winters man who inherits it is destined to develop multiple talents - and the curse of madness. Plagued by hallucinations and nightmares, notorious crime lord Griffin Winters is convinced he has been struck with the Winters Curse. And the instincts that have helped him survive the streets and rise to power are now drawing him toward Adelaide Pyne, the bothersome social reformer. But even as he arranges a meeting with the mysterious woman, he has no idea how closely their fates are bound, for Adelaide holds the Burning Lamp in her possession. A dreamlight reader, Adelaide should be able to manipulate the Lamp's light to save both Griffin's sanity and his life. But their dangerous psychical experiment makes them the target of forces both inside and outside of the Arcane Society. And though desire strengthens their power their different lives will keep them apart - if death doesn't take them together.

Adelaide is a very unusual woman. Born to parents who are members of the Arcane Society, when they are murdered her guardian steals her fortune and sells her to a brothel at age 15. There she is purchased by a mr. Smith, who wants her not for her virginity, but for her talent at reading dreamlight. He wants her to work an ancient artefact for him, enhancing his own psychic powers. But Adelaide escapes his clutches, almost killing him, and taking the lamp with her. She then flees to America, as the aide of a fortune teller, and later she even travels with a wild west show. She becomes a very wealthy women, and then the time is right to return home, to England, where she sets up as a Social Reformer. Raiding brothels and freeing the under age girls, giving them a second chance at life. Offering them an education and employment where they wish.
But the raiding of the brothels has brought her to the attention of the local crimelords, and one who is searching for a dreamlight reader. And the lamp that was stolen from his family 20 years ago, when his parents were murdered, and he fled to live on the streets. He quickly gathered his own gang of youngsters around him and nowadays he is one of the most powerful people in London. He believes he has caught the Winters curse, and Adelaide is the one to free him of it. The moment Adelaide meets him, she knows it has been destined that they meet. In all those years, she never got rid of the lamp, even when fleeing a town in the midst of night. She feels that the lamp is his, as Griffins energy has the same flow as that of the lamp. Griffin astonished that not only has he found his dreamlight reader, but that she is in possession of the lamp, and she is willing to give it to him. To work it for him even, after studying his great-grandfathers journal about the thing. Ofcourse, the mutual and instant attraction between them has nothing to do with it!

But some one else is after Adelaide and the lamp, and will Griffin be able to keep them both safe?

A great story about the workings of the underworld of London, while we mostly read about the upper class. Even though Griffin should be upperclass, because of his birth. Both their parents are murdered, both have learned to live with little. Very good and unusual main characters. As usual in an Amanda Quick novel, the secondary characters are nice to read about too, and there are some previous characters who have a large role in this book as well.

I have one point of criticism: the dialogue in this one, is at some things almost wordly the same as in the previous books. And reading them almost back to back makes that very obvious and disturbing.

And in the end, all the pieces fall together, there really is no coïncidence. The last book in this trilogy will be writting in the far future, under the pen name Jayne Castle. But as I am way behind on my reading on her novels, I don't know if I will skip the previous one to read this new one, or just put it on my TBR mountain of books.

zaterdag 24 april 2010

Debbie Macomber - The Wyoming Kid

I took me many months to finally finish this book. Suffice it to say, I was not captivated by it.

The Wyoming Kid

A Cowboy's Joy Rancher Lonny Ellison has never known a woman like Joy Fuller. For one thing, she doesn't seem very interested in him, and as an ex-rodeo cowboy, Lonny's not used to that. Women mobbed the Wyoming Kid during his rodeo days! And another thing, he and Joy -- who's a schoolteacher and his sister Letty's best friend -- seem to argue constantly. But it doesn't matter, does it? Because he's not interested in Joy, either. Wait a minute. Maybe he is. At least that's what Letty seems to think their arguments are all about. Yup, she might have a point there. Now he has to convince Joy that marriage to the Wyoming Kid will be as exciting as an eight-second bull ride and as sweet as the cookies she loves to bake.

Jayne Anne Krentz - Fired Up

I enjoyed this first novel in the Arcane Society - Dreamlight - Fired Up. And I guess I will continue with the second novel, Amanda Quick - Burning lamp.

Fired Up

The New York Times-bestselling author presents her latest Arcane Society novel and introduces the first book in the Dreamlight Trilogy - the story of a curse that spans generations, and the love that can heal it. . . .More than three centuries ago, Nicholas Winters irrevocably altered his genetic makeup in an obsessionfueled competition with alchemist and Arcane Society founder Sylvester Jones. Driven to control their psychic abilities, each man's decision has reverberated throughout the family line, rewarding some with powers beyond their wildest dreams, and cursing others to a life filled with madness and hallucinations.Jack Winters, descendant of Nicholas, has been experiencing nightmares and blackouts - just the beginning, he believes - of the manifestation of the Winters family curse. The legend says that he must find the Burning Lamp or risk turning into a monster. But he can't do it alone; he needs the help of a woman with the gift to read the lamp's dreamlight.Jack is convinced that private investigator Chloe Harper is that woman. Her talents for finding objects and accessing dream energy are what will save him, but their sudden and powerful sexual pull threatens to overwhelm them both. Danger surrounds them, and it doesn't take long for Chloe to pick up the trail of the missing lamp. And as they draw closer to the lamp, the raw power that dwells within it threatens to sweep them into a hurricane of psychic force.

As usual with a Jayne Anne Krentz novel, it is easy to read, easy to get captured by the story evolving. A strong man and equally strong woman who find each other, in the midst of danger, with a lot of family, eccentrics and enemies around. Some previous characters make an appearance, which I always enjoy. But there is also a sneak peak in a possible next novel, this one with Mr. Jones himself?

I’m not really in the mood to write an extensive review, perhaps sometime later. But I did love it a lot.

vrijdag 23 april 2010

Sabrina Jeffries - After the Abduction

I enjoyed this third part of the Swanley Spinsters series. Sitting on a sunny terrace with a cold drink, hmmm.

After the abduction

What Happens When A Proper Young Lady Gives In To A Reckless Love?After two London Seasons - and a score of resoundingly dull society suitors - lovely Juliet Laverick still longs for only one man: Morgan Pryce, the dashing scoundrel who kidnapped her two years ago. But her determination to bring him to justice hasn't waned, either - not even when the man she mistakes for Morgan, his twin brother Sebastian, tells her some shocking news: Her mysterious paramour has disappeared. Sebastian, Lord Templemore, dares not admit that he's the one Juliet seeks - that it is his kiss she still yearns for. Confessing to her abduction would bring disaster and scandal upon them both. But how can he convince Juliet to forsake her pursuit of her dream lover - when all he dreams of is holding her in his arms again?

How come, after two years of silence, there are rumors circulating about her elopement? Lady Juliet how grown up in those two years into a lovely young woman, but she refuses all her suitors because of minor flaws. Can she still harbor feelings for the man who abducted her? And then left her standing with only one hot kiss to remember him by?
But her brother in law, Griff Knighton, has finally found some leads for where to find Morgan Pryce. But when they arrive at Charnwood Hall, they only find Sebastian, Lord Templemore, who claims Morgan is his deceased twin brother. But Juliet refuses to believe that. She knows Sebastian is the one who abducted her. They spend over a week closely together, of course she recognizes him. And her meddling sister Rosamund not only sees a chance to play matchmaker again, she gets the chance to ask a local wisewoman for advice on how to become pregnant. With the result that Griff doesn’t get anymore of the steaming hot baths he so enjoys …

But Sebastian keeps denying to be Morgan, and with good reasons. But Juliet wants the truth, and when they begin a dangerous game of seduction, who will give up first? Juliet wants just the truth, and his love, instead of revenge. But can Sebastian give it to her? He has sworn not to fall in love ever, after the disastrous marriage his parents had, and the loneliness it gave him as a boy. Yes, he wants to marry Juliet, but only on his own terms. He won’t give in to any of her demands. He won’t be twisted around her little finger. And Juliet, she won’t start a marriage based on lies. If he can’t trust her, and her family, what is the point?

I really love to read more about the characters I have met in previous books. To catch up with what has happened with them in the meantime. Sebastian his life has been lived very soberly. Duty, honor, obligations. But then Juliet arrives at his estate, and his world is tossed upside down. Can he stand to lose her a second time? Can he give in to her demands, and make right what he has made her suffer?
And Juliet has grown up, she learned her lesson the hard way, but her family still sees her as that naïve little girl she used to be.

I will start reading the next book in this series shortly.

woensdag 21 april 2010

Sabrina Jeffries - A notorious love

This is the second book in The Swanlea Spinsters series. I read the first one a few weeks ago, in which the first part of the story is told.

A notorious love

A Desperate MeasureHelena Laverick is at her wits end! The only man who can help find her eloping young sister is that scoundrel Daniel Brennan - the man who played with her emotions last year and then left. And he used to be a smuggler! Although Mrs. Nunley's Guide to Etiquette for Young Ladies would never approve, Helena is forced to go after the runaway in Daniel's company. But something about being with him feels oddly freeing - and a delicious tingle warns Helena that more than her reputation may be in danger...
Daniel finds most of the prim and proper lovely's rules ridiculous - but when she insists on masquerading as his wife for the sake of appearances, he immediately envisions the delights of sharing a bedchamber. The unexpected smoldering beneath her straitlaced exterior ignites his desire, and the vulnerability hidden beneath her cool control makes him want her even more. Yet Helena's a lady, and he's the son of a highwayman. How can he ever ask her to share his world?

When her younger sister Juliet has run away with an army captain, who doesn’t even exist, Helena has no other choice than to turn to Daniel Brennan. Her brother in law and middle sister are still on their honeymoon on the continent, so they can’t help. Helena has tracked the couple back to London, instead of Scotland, and she fears Morgan is a free trader. And who better to help find them than Daniel Brennan, who happened to be one himself years ago.

At first Daniel refuses to believe her, but when he finds out she is right, he agrees to help her find the young couple. But he won’t take Helena with him! She is only a liability to him. And not because of her lame leg as she thinks. So he sets out chasing them on horseback, thinking Helena will refuse to ride a horse. But she is stubborn and goes with him anyway. When her legs give out on her, Daniel is very sorry and mad at himself for underestimating Helena’s stubbornness.

They are very much attracted to each other, ever since the charade last year. But Daniel spoiled it by lying to Helena, and he has vowed not to do that again. They have to act as husband and wife to protect Helena’s reputation, and that also means sharing a bedchamber… Who seduces whom? Then they find out, it is not so much an elopement as a kidnapping! His past is coming back to haunt Daniel, as his old boss is after the kidnapping of Juliet. And when the two of them are caught as well, how will this end?

I really love the writing style of Sabrina Jeffries. Her heroines are unusual but feisty and smart, they won’t back down for a man. And the heroes are real man as well. The language is earthy, though never coarse. And she writes really nice love scenes. The stories themselves, as far as I have read them, are funny and original.
So I will continue reading her books, which is a good thing, as I have a lot of them on my shelves!

maandag 19 april 2010

Jenna MacLaine - Bound by Sin

I really enjoyed the third book in the Cin Craven series.

Bound by Sin

As the Civil War rages among mortal men, Cin Craven is locked in an epic battle of her own - fighting the renegade vampires whose unquenchable appetites she knows all too well. At her side are the immortal warriors of The Righteous - among them her husband, her lover, her soul-mate Michael. With a passion bordering on possession, Cin's love for Michael knows no bounds. But when a ruthless plantation owner kidnaps Cin's cousin the most terrifying battle of all awaits. Cin is drawn to the irresistible lure of dark magic to stop their enemies, while Michael staunchly opposes it - putting their love and loyalty to the ultimate test.

While in France, Cin is summoned home by a powerful summoning spell, just as she summoned Michael all those 44 years ago. Her cousin has been abducted from her own bedroom, and strangely enough, an ancient Greek Urn with her. Cin promises her aunt she will bring Claire home, as soon as possible. But getting into Savannah, while the Cil War is raging in America, is not an easy task. Especially when you are a vampire and cannot travel in daylight.

When Cin and Michael finally locate Claire, they are surprised and relieved she is alright, and has not been harmed in the least by her abductor. But Adrian won't release Claire before she gives him the Urn he is after, which she refuses. He throws Cin and Michael of his island, with the treath of burning them if he finds them on his land again. As he has his own witch, he is not afraid of Cin's powers in the least. But they are not easily defeated, and Cin just buys his island and plantation out from under him. With the help of some southern soldiers, she then evicts Adrian from the island, wondering why his wife won't leave with him. But Evangeline has been murdered two years ago, and al Cin sees, is a ghost. A ghost with a very big mouth.

When they are alone with Claire at last, a very strange story enfolds. It happens that the Urn is the prison of the wargod Ares, and as Claire is its keeper, she is the only one who can summon him out of the Urn. Only one time a day, and only for a short period of time. She has fallen in love with Ares, and is pregnant with his child. So no, she won't give up the Urn. And she doesn't really want to go back home, a place she has never really belonged, being "strange".

And Cin has to figure out what to do with the plantation, and more important, with the slaves that live on it and are also her possession. She is horrified with that idea and wants to free them, but that is against the law in that time and place. And what are those people supposed to do? They have no education, no place to live, no way to make a living for themselves, even if she takes them to the North. So she makes some very progressive plans for the plantation, after all, she has more than enough money to spend.

But Adrian doesn't give up, and he comes back for the Urn. He poisons Claire, and takes of with Ares in his possession. Cin and Michael have to chase him for days. Adrian wants Ares to help the South win the war, and make him a war hero in the process.

Also, the dark magic inside of Cin comes to life on the island. She is drawn to Pandora, a mighty voodoo queen, and Adrians daughter. And Pandora finally teaches Cin that the dark magic is also a part of herself, and she has to stop being afraid of it, to learn how to work it. Even though Michael is afraid of it, and wants her not to, finally Cin masters the dark magic inside herself.

And in the end, she won't be able to bring Claire back home to Scotland with her. Claire ends up on Mount Olympus as Ares' wife, and the mother of his child. But then Morrigan pays them a visit ...

Lets just say, I am glad there will be more books in this great series. I just hope the wait won't be too long.

Susan Wittig Albert - Wormwood

Did I mention I love reading cozy mysteries before? I have some favourite authors in this genre, and Susan Wittig Albert is one of them. Wormwood is the 17th novel in the China Bayles series, of which the first six have been translated in Dutch, which is how I found this very good author.


China's friends and family are urging her to get some rest - and a Kentucky Shaker village seems the ideal place for it. At Mount Zion, China can assist with some herbal workshops - while absorbing all things Shaker, from their furniture to their peaceful ways. But the restored modern version of the village, striving to become a popular tourist attraction, is plagued with misfortune and strife - some of it the likely result of sabotage. China and her friend Martha are hoping to get to the bottom of it. However, much like Shaker history itself, the case appears simpler at first than it is. There is tension behind the serene exterior. And after a shocking death occurs during her stay, China will plunge into the archives of another time to connect the sins of the past with a modern-day murder.

After the ordeal with the murder of her recently discovered half-brother, the solution of the murder of her father 20 years ago, China can really use some time off. And what better way to do that, then to go with a good friend to a quiet mountain town in Kentucky, to work with herbs and sook in the atmosphere of an ancient Shaker village. But Martha asks China to help her find out who is behind the string of bad luck and minor criminal acts that are plaguing the resort. And China wouldn't be China if she didn't plunge in it.

This book is very different from the rest of the series, as it is made out in two parts. First, there are old journal writings, and the telling of the stories of the Shaker people in 1912, and then the things happening at the now. Before reading this book, I had never even heard of the Shakers, but what I have learned now, is very interesting. I had the intention to just skip those parts, but it sucked me right in, and I just had to know what would happen next. Yes, I was very captivated by both storylines. It was a very easy read, with a very sudden ending. Which I won't give away in case someone really reads my blog.

As always, I am curious what murder China will have to solve in the next novel, and what the new series will be like. Susan Wittig Albert has been on my shelves since I was a teenager, and I guess she will be on my shelves when I am old and gray ...

zondag 18 april 2010

Jenna MacLaine - Grave Sins

I have very much enjoyed this second book in the Cin Craven series bij Jenna MacLaine

Grave Sins

In the arms of her lover Michael, Cin Craven has found satisfaction for her most primal longings, reaching heights of pleasure no mere human could ever imagine. She has also found a purpose for her unearthly powers. Cin is a member of The Righteous, a band of slayers that hunts down vampires who inflict evil upon the world. With Michael by her side, Cin's latest mission brings her face-to-face with Marrakesh, a beautiful, half-mad vampire queen charged with slaughtering humans. If she's found guilty, Marrakesh will pay with her life. But Cin is convinced that someone - or something - far more ruthless is trying to steal the queen's throne.. It's a mission that will pit Michael and Cin against each other for the first time, awakening their darkest instincts and testing their love like never before.

Cin is the very first witch turned vampire in history, and her powers are amazing. She is also an accomplished warrior, fighting beside her consort Michael. Cin and Michael and their friends Devlin and Justine are at Ravenworth Hall for their yearly two week vacation from travelling the world at the request of the High King of all vampires to hunt and destroy the vampires who break his law. Sadly, their rest is cut short when Drake, a Sentinel of the High Court, appears. Their orders are to go to Edinburgh, where the Queen of the Western Lands is rumored to be killing humans. Cin is wary of Drake at once, and there is bad blood between Michael and Drake. Drake keeps trying to entice Cin away from Michael, and makes certain Michael catches him and Cin in some compromising positions. This drives a wedge between Cin and Michael, and Cin has no idea how to heal the rift between them. It is possible that after a mere 13 years together, Michael doesn't trust her anymore?

In the mean time, they have to find out what is happening to Marrakesh. Cin just feels the Queen is being bewitched, but who is after her, or are they after the throne of the Western Lands? After all, the Queen is her husbands enforcer, and with her out of his life, can he hold his throne? After losing the wife he has loved for the last 600 years? The Righteous have to find out what is happening in Edinburgh, who are selling human bodies to the medical university, is it really the Queen? Are her most trusted luitenants behind it? Or is it really a ghost because no one can see the intruder, though Cin knows there is someone else in the palace.

When Cin is doubting the most, the Goddess Morrigan appears again, telling her she is her creation, her weapon, and Michael is created especially for her. She is doing the Goddess' work.

From the start I did suspect one person behind it all, and I was proven right. But the tale behind it was certainly worth telling. I liked the fact that Cin's werewolf friend made an important appearance in this story as well. There are a few very hot love scenes between Cin and Michael, but overal it is a fast paced action story. And in the end, they do marry, vampire style, though that is very seldomly done. After all, when you life almost forever, can you really expect to spend all that time being in love?

A historical paranormal romance I really like. Vampires in the 1800's. I am very eager to continue with the third book in the series, though I am reading two other books at the moment as well.

vrijdag 16 april 2010

Susan Sizemore - Dark Stranger

Dark Stranger

New York Times bestselling author Susan Sizemore presents an exciting twist on her popular Primes series: the novel read by the one and only Vampire Book Club! Share the thrills as you discover a hidden world where passions and fear run high, and a vampire General and an Empire princess together find illicit, unquenchable desire...

A twist of fate made Zoe Pappas heir to the Byzant throne. Bound by duty and devotion to keep the Empire safe, Zoe is captured while on a secret diplomatic mission and sent to an underground prisoner-of-war camp. In this strange, shadowy place, residents are governed by fellow inmate General Matthias "Doc" Raven, whose powerful magnetism rouses an urgent desire in Zoe. But the intensity of her attraction is matched by her surprise at discovering that Doc has a secret of his own: he is a vampire.

Zoe's presence puts everyone in the camp in danger. Doc knows it, and knows too that Zoe's royal status makes it impossible for her to bond with a vampire. The only way to save her is to help her escape, and lose her forever. But some fires are impossible to quench, even when following your heart is the ultimate taboo....

A great story that kept me captivated, made me want to continue reading well after my lunchbreak.

While on a diplomatic mission to convince the other known alien races who are fighting the Hajim to become allies, and stop fighting the humans as well, her ship is attacted by the Hajim, her fleet scattered and destroyed, and Zoe is taken prisoner with a lot of other military personel. They are send to one of the Prisoner of War camps the Hajim have. Guarded by the Krull, they are taken to an enourmous underground labyrinth. Mimimum food, water and lighting makes surviving difficult, not to mention there are other species kept prisoner. Zoe’s presence makes it possible to communicate with them, as she has learned their languages. She has extensive mind implants for all kind of things, but is camouflaged as a normal Marine Luitenant. The prison camp is ruled by the gorgeous General Matthias Raven, who is also the only camp doctor. Everything is set up military style, with the normal chains of command. Being a Royal Princess, it is difficult for Zoe to just accept orders from sone one else. But no-one is to know who she really is, her presence engangers them all. If the Hajim find out who she really is, the heir to the Byzant Empire throne, even more people will die.

Doc and Zoe are drawn together from the first moment she entered the prison camp. She doesn’t know for a long time he is a vampire, a suprahuman being. Exclusive relationships between men and women are not encouraged, as there are so few woman to each man. And in the dark, which has its effect on most humans, there is little to do but exercise and have sex. Zoe doesn’t want a lover, or a relationship. She has to put the good of the Empire first. But Doc Raven knows she is his bondmate, and although he fights it, especially when he finds out who Zoe really is, he cannot stay away from her. And once they do become lovers, the heat is on!

Finally, they know they have to escape when they find out from the Krill that the Hajim will take all the women away. They must have found out who they are looking for afterall. So with the help of the other races, they concer their prisonguards, only to be rescued by the special forces in the nick of time. But can a vampire marry the Princess of the Empire?

I liked this book a lot. I do like a bit of SF now and then. It is set in the World of the Primes, but then a few centuries further. Humanity almost died out at one point, and is now spread out throughout the galaxy, governed by the Empire, guarded by the navy, the marines, the fleet. Some traditions never die out. Some aliens are friendly, others are not. I am very curious to the next Prime novel.

dinsdag 13 april 2010

Donna Fletcher - The Irish Devil

A great book I finished in one sitting.

The Irish Devil

Ireland in the Middle Ages - a land of both heavenly landscapes and hellish warfare. It is in this world that Lord Eric of Shanekill is both feared and revered. His unstoppable rage on the battlefield has made him known as the "Irish Devil." Little did he know that his greatest battle would be fought in his heart.

Faith, daughter of Lord William of Donegal Castle, is a healer who lives on the edge of society. Shamed by a cruel act of injustice, cast out by her father, she is the last one anyone would choose for a wife . . . But when the "Irish Devil" is given his choice of Lord Terra's daughters, he demands Faith's hand in marriage. Against all obstacles, they struggle to overcome the pain of their pasts and realize the passion which both have desired - and denied - for so long.

Lord Eric has been given one of Lord Williams daughters in marriage, and he is eager to settle down in the Keep that is given him by the Irish King. After years of battle he ans his men are ready for peace, and growing crops and babies. The three daughters presented him do not appeal to him at all, but then he meets the fourth one, the healer he had his eye upon from the start and he picks her. Not knowing why her family shuns her, and not really caring. But when he fears he is betrayed, that she is no longer a virgin, he cannot overcome his pride when she refuses to tell him the full truth of her attack that night six years ago.

Faith still cares for Eric, and does not want to leave him. There is nothing back home for her. So she sets upon creating a healing garden and cottage, to help the servants and warriors who need her skills. Still Eric won't leave her alone, the passion they have together is to hot to deny. Yet he won't bed her till he knows the truth. With her laughing and caring nature, Faith soon gets the love of all within the keep, even Eric's though he doesnot believe in love as such. But when he is called into battle once more, she tells him she loves him, and he does not know how to respond to that. Can it be true?

But there is more to the attack than an attempted rape, it was an attempted murder. And when her father and stepmother come to visit, at the demand of the Irish Devil, another girl is found murdered. Is the priest the killer after all, is that why Faith never entered the chapel, or is it someone else?

Protect by her husband, his warriors, and most important, her own huge dog, Faith survives to learn the truth at last.

A book I thoroughly enjoyed reading. No magic this time as in the previous books I read by Donna Fletcher, but a great story nonetheless. A powerfull warrior, with a gentle and caring side he shows only to those he loves. And an equal strong woman, who decided to live when it would be so much easier to just die. A woman who made a new life for herself, when her family shunned her because she shamed them by living through a brutal attack.

Donna Fletcher is another one of my favourite authors, perhaps not so much for the intensity of the stories, but the easy way they read, and make you relax with a good lovestory. Luckily, I have a few more of her books to read on my shelves.

maandag 12 april 2010

Nalini Singh - Archangel's Kiss

A great series, and I loved this third part in it immensely.

Archangel's Kiss

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux wakes from a year-long coma to find that she has become an angel-and that her lover, the stunningly dangerous archangel Raphael, likes having her under his control. But almost immediately, Raphael must ready Elena for a flight to Beijing, to attend a ball thrown by the archangel Lijuan. Ancient and without conscience, Lijuan's power lies with the dead. And she has organized the most perfect and most vicious of welcomes for Elena...

From the moment she awakens, Elena has to fight. The archangel she loves to remain herself, and not a mindless pet. Her new body, to regain the use of her muscles and to fight with wings. The other archangels and their vampire servants trying to kill her. But underneath it all, she will always be a Guild hunter, and Raphael uses her skills to track down the murderous vampires when they strike at his own.
But when Lijuan orders them all to Bejing for a ball in Elena's honor, the first Angel Made in living memory, they know their time is running short.

It is an action packed novel, lots of fighting, lots of learning about being an angel, but also with hard love scenes. The hard memories of Elena's childhood keep bubbling to the surface, making her remember things she kept hidden for years. Horrible memories, of how her mother and sisters died.
But also about how an Archangel can love a mortal, and decides to die with her, or live with her, forever. Elena is strong, very strong of character, of body, but of course no match for the angels and vampires around her. But she is stubborn, and won't give up, and I like that in a heroine.

Yes, a great series, though I still like the psy-changeling books better. Another keeper on my shelves, autoread. No idea what my next book will be at the moment though.

Karen Hawkins - Lois Lane tells all

I finished this book yesterday, just in time to give it to my friend.

Karen Hawkins - Lois Lane tells all

Lois Lane tells all

She thinks she’s Lois Lane. . .
Susan Collins wants to be a hard-hitting reporter, but there’s never been much call for her talents in sleepy Glory, North Carolina. But when the Murder Mystery Club—a trio of bored but enterprising octogenarians—decide to open their own CSI lab at the assisted living center, and strange ‘accidents’ begin to happen around town, Susan senses she might have discovered the news story of her dreams.

He doesn’t want to be her Superman. . .

Mark Tremayne has agreed to come back to Glory and to take over as CFO of The Glory Examiner. His job is to keep the newspaper profitable, which means covering the annual Baptist Bake-Off and selling ads for the county fair, not allowing his main and too-sexy-for-her(and his)-own-good reporter to hare off after a wild story that seems to have brought out the worst in one of Glory’s many colorful residents.

But together . . . they’re Kryptonite.

Mark’s and Susan’s viewpoints on how to run a paper are from different planets, but their mutual attraction is in total alignment. Despite their arguments, the indomitable redhead and the hot accountant are a sexual explosion waiting to happen.

And when it does, Glory had better watch out!

After the first book in this series, which was really hilarious, I had very high hopes for this one. But though it was a nice story, it was neither as funny as sexy as the first one, Talk of the Town. So I am a bit disappointed.
Marc has promised his sister Roxy to get the newspaper she bought back in the black figures, but as he knows nothing about the newspaper business, he keeps clashing with Susan, the editor of the newspaper. She does have a degree in journalism, and is a very good reporter. So Susan just has to teach Marc how to run a paper. They are very attracted to each other, but Marc doesn't want to stay in a little town like Glory, he has his own business to run and will go back to Raleigh in a few months. Susan is taking care of her alcoholic father, she does her own home redecorating, she loves to play poker, to fish, just one of the guys. Exept for her secret love of sexy shoes, which she never wears in public ... I think that part could have been fleshed out a bit. But Susan doesn't want to leave Glory, her whole life is there, and she loves working for the paper. She is very much into Superman and Lois Lane. She even sees Marc as a Clark Kent type of man.
Susan dressed up for Marc only one time, and had him totally captivated with her outfit while she made a presentation of her ideas for the future of the paper. So he gave her free run of it, to do as she pleased.

There is the big mystery of the annual baptist church bake sale, and did the profits from last year really disappear? What happened? And is finding the answer to that question enough that Susan gets threatened? Her car brakes get sliced, her boat drilled through.

And what is up with the Murder Mystery Club in the Assisted Living Center? Those three old folks, with Tundy as their new supporter/driver. What on earth are they doing with that CSI kit, getting peoples fingerprints, looking through the trash, digging up all kind of secrets.

So, all in all, a nice book, but not as great as the first one. Still, Karen Hawkins is autobuy and a must read author. I am curious about the next book, perhaps Ethan starring? And of course her historical romances are always great. Time for the next MacLean curse episode.

zondag 11 april 2010

Annette Blair - Triplet Witch trilogy

I just finished reading this series, and I really loved it. The series is made up by the following three books:

Sex and the psychic witch

Introducing the Cartwright sisters-Harmony, Destiny and Storm-triplets and unstoppable seductresses. Harmony, the buyer for her sisters' vintage curio shop, can read objects and learn of their former owners. Now, a Celtic ring leads her to a castle on the coast of Massachusetts. King Paxton's money-pit is cursed, and he hopes that this leggy blonde can help him find peace with an angry ghost, a disgruntled renovation crew-and his own heart.

Gone with the witch

Gone with the witch

The Cartwright triplets use their magic for good and their good looks for seduction.When beautiful bad girl Storm Cartwright hears the sound of a baby crying every time she's near Aiden McCloud, she turns on the charm. Because she's sure it means a child is in need - and that the handsome antiques restorer is the key to finding it. And when she lures Aiden into her seductive trap and kidnaps him, something magical happens between them.

Never been witched

Never been witched

The Cartwright triplets - Harmony, Destiny, and Storm - are psychic sirens who use their magic for good and their good looks for seduction. But for Destiny, catching the attention of a paranormal debunker isn't going to be easy.

I really enjoyed this series, contemporary paranormal romance. Three hot sisters who are also witches and psychics, and how they meet and catch their man. They are sexy, and now it. Each has their own destiny to follow, and helping the man in their life find his own. They are down to earth, although they are psychic.

Harmony has to fight the ghost who haunts King's castle, and she just knows he already has an heir, a daughter. When she casts a spell for a family for the both of them, Reggie finds them, and who knows, King is a grandfather too! When Reggie became pregnant three years ago, her mother threw her out, and never bothered to tell King of that, she just kept collecting his child support checks. And now she has found her father.

Storm hears babies crying, and especially when she is near Aidan. She strongly believes it is his child, but he knows certain that never happened. Boy is he wrong about that! They find his baby girl, and on the road Strom rescues some more children, proving to Aidan she is not nuts, she really is psychic. But can she get a wanderer to grow roots after all?

Destiny has the hardest work. Morgan doesn't believe in psychics, and one of his hobbies is to prove they do not exist. But why are there two ghost and an angel in the lighthouse he lives in? Fighting what you are yourself is wrong, and Destiny has to prove him that his twin sister, who died at age 12, is with them. Destiny has always painted the visions she sees, since an early age, and Morgan is really spooked when he sees paintings of his past, his present and, what will become, his future. But in the end the ex-priest not only believes her, he embraces his own psychic self.

This series is richly decorated with cats, tattoos, spells, lovemaking and lovemaking toys and sweets, and I really loved it a lot. Lots of humor and great quote tshirts.

An autor who is a keeper on my shelves, and has become autobuy for me.