Monday, 21 March 2011

Review: Some Girls Bite (Chicagoland Vampires #1)

Description (from Goodreads)
First in a brand new series about a Chicago graduate student's introduction into a society of vampires.
Sure, the life of a graduate student wasn't exactly glamorous, but it was Merit's. She was doing fine until a rogue vampire attacked her. But he only got a sip before he was scared away by another bloodsucker and this one decided the best way to save her life was to make her the walking undead.

Turns out her savior was the master vampire of Cadogan House. Now she's traded sweating over her thesis for learning to fit in at a Hyde Park mansion full of vamps loyal to Ethan "Lord o' the Manor" Sullivan. Of course, as a tall, green-eyed, four-hundred- year-old vampire, he has centuries' worth of charm, but unfortunately he expects her gratitude and servitude. But an inconvenient sunlight allergy and Ethan's attitude are the least of her concerns. Someone's still out to get her. Her initiation into Chicago's nightlife may be the first skirmish in a war and there will be blood.

I picked this up after I'd finished reading At a Grave's End earlier than expected. I was filling time before finishing the Night Huntress series ready for book 6 (This Side of the Grave) which was out on the 22nd :D

I found Some Girls Bite a little confusing at first and I wondered if I'd missed an earlier short or something, but it didn't take long for me to get into the swing of things and found myself getting gentle sucked in.

There is loads of banter and it made me laugh out loud a lot. I could read Merit's pov forever. The action doesn't come until 3/4 of the way in, but I found that I didn't mind, nor did I particularly notice and that's because of Merit's engaging pov.

I didn't particularly like Ethan and I didn't get Merit's attraction to him. He just seemed an ass.  Morgan seemed a little  more rounded. Team Morgan all the way :)

All in all it was an enjoyable romp and I can't wait to read the next installment.

Rating: 4/6 - Liked It

Friday, 18 March 2011

Play for Passion (Psy-Changeling #9) by Naini Singh

Description (from Goodreads)
In his position as Tracker for the SnowDancer pack, Drew Kincaid must rein in rogue changelings who've lost control of their animal halves- even if it means killing those who've gone too far. But nothing in his life has prepared him for the battle he must now wage-to win the heart of a woman who makes his body ignite...and who threatens to enslave his wolf.

I needed to read this. It'd been on my radar since Bonds of justice, and I have other books I wanted to read first (curse of the charlion for one), but I needed to read something I knew would be well written after reading the disappointing and frustrating book Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick.

And it didn't disappoint. I love drew and the relationship he has with other characters so it was great to finally read his story. I also loved the way Singh teases us with Hawk and Sierra (is it June yet?)

The tension is really starting to build now. The Phy are getting ready for something big!

Rating: 5/6 -Really Liked It

Review: Torment by Kate Lauren

Description (from Goodreads)
Hell on earth. That's what it's like for Luce to be apart from her fallen angel boyfriend, Daniel. It took them an eternity to find one another, but now he has told her he must go away. Just long enough to hunt down the Outcasts - immortals who want to kill Luce. Daniel hides Luce at Shoreline, a school on the rocky California coast with unusually gifted students -Nephilim, the offspring of fallen angels and humans.

At Shoreline, Luce learns what the Shadows are, and how she can use them as windows to her previous lives. Yet the more Luce learns, the more she suspects that Daniel hasn't told her everything. He's hiding something - something dangerous. What if Daniel's version of the past isn't actually true? What if Luce is really meant to be with someone else? The second novel in the addictive FALLEN series . . . where love never dies.
I'm not going to lie, my hopes where high for this book. Even though I knew it was going to be different from its predecessor due to the 'mystery' being solved. I just hoped that it wouldn't lose it's edge.

It did. It lost everything that made me like it in the first place. I didn't like Luce for most of this book. She was annoyingly brat-like. All she did was moan and whine and she just did too many things unexpectedly. I didn't get her. I didn't understand her motivations. I tried I really did.

I never really bought into Cam in Fallen, but it was Daniel who I felt let me down the most here. There didn't seem to be anything left of him that I liked. He seemed as desperate and as needy as Cam had been in book 1. Luce's friendship with Callie seemed pointless as well. We didn't 'know' who Callie was, we hadn't 'met' her so why have Luce talking about her all the time. Miles and Shelby were annoying replacements for those at sword and cross. Miles was annoying, and Shelby, well she was just dull.

I started to struggle halfway through. I was bored but then Luce fenced. It wasn't a spectacular fight scene but it was enough to suck me back in -It really helped that one of my twitter friends encouraged me to keep going for the twist at the end, so I began reading with more interest. It was slightly better second half than first, but I was not impressed with the ending; how Luce-like. It didn't feel like the end of a book, it felt more like an end to chapter. I feel that the story could have been told in half the amount of pages it actually took. In fact, torment and passion should have been one book. I'll still read passion. I have to, I'm already 2 books in and Daniel has to redeem himself, because seriously, he so didn't drop to the ground and bury his head in the grass, did he?

Rating: 3/4 - It Was Okay

Friday, 11 March 2011

Review: Fallen by lauran kate

Description (from goodreads)
There’s something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori.

Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price’s attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah, Georgia. He’s the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move.

Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce–and goes out of his way to make that very clear–she can’t let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, she has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret . . . even if it kills her.

I'd seen reviews for Fallen on quite a few of the regular blogs and websites I visit. It always seemed to be compared to hush hush by Becca Fitzpatrick and I couldn't decide between them. Then while at a friends house one day, browsing in her library, I noticed she had Hush Hush. Decision made. So read it, and really liked it, then wondered if I should bother reading Fallen. Although I was mesmerised by the cover; it's gorgeous, the reviews on goodreads put me off -so many negative reviews (can I just say I can't actually believe people over on goodreads are compairing it to Twilight. Please, it's nothing like Twilight. At all). I ended up forgetting about it for few months. Until now.

We meet Luce as she's being sent off to reform school after an incident involving a fire and the death of her, boyfriend/guy she liked. I really liked the gothic feel it had to it. I also liked Daniel. The way we met him; Luce saw him and he smiled at her then flipped her off, and that sums his reaction to Luce throughout the first half of the book. The interactions between the characters are captivating enough that they keep you reading even though there's nothing much plot wise going on.

It felt more grown up than Hush Hush but to be honest I can't really remember much about Hush Hush -apart from the fact I read it in one sitting. I also read this in one sitting. I was total sucked in.

The only problem I had with this book was that once the big reveal was, well, revealed, it lost it's allure; the tension that held it all together disappeared.

I particularly liked Arrina and I'm looking forward to seeing how she develops in the next book.

The story was told in haunting, yet simple way. I just hope Torment is just as good... if not better.

Rating: 5/6 - Really Liked It

Review: Stormwalker by Allyson James

Janet Begay is a Stormwalker, capable of wielding the raw elemental power of nature, a power that threatens to overwhelm her. Only her lover, Mick, is able to calm the storm within her-even as their passion reaches unimaginable heights of ecstasy. 

But when an Arizona police chief's daughter is taken by a paranormal evil, they find themselves venturing where no human can survive-for only together can they overcome the greatest danger they've ever faced.

I'd just finished Archangel's Consort and was looking through my To-Read List trying to decide which book to go for next. Then one of the con's of having a To-Read List/Pile bit me on the ass; I always forget how a book ends up on the list or what caught my attention about it in the first place. I managed to whittle my choice down the 3. Darkfever, Stormwalker, and Fallen. Finally I settled on Stormwalker.

I loved the cover and I think it was that which ultimately made up my mind for me.
Janet is half Navajo (fathers side), and more importantly, a Stormwalker. She is able to draw magic from a storm. We are placed immediately into the action as Janet battles with a Skinwalker (no not the loveable Jane Yellowrock!). Calling on a nearby storm to aid her she wins the fight, which she suffers for afterwards. It's an impressive start, and one I don't instantly dislike! We learn straight away that like Allie Beckstrom, Janet has parent issues, but it's Mother issues this time. By chapter 2 we've also met Nash, an annoying Unbeliever who has it in for Janet right from the off.

As much as I thought the first half of this was an enjoyable, easy read, there were elements that stopped me from enjoying it too much; I didn't like the flashback style at all, surely this information could have been slipped in some other way? I also really disliked the original meeting between Janet and Mick. It didn't do anything to make me like the characters, in fact I think I liked them less after reading it. I started losing interest around chapter 11 but thankfully it picked up again around chapter 15, but by then I'd stopped caring. I had to force myself to keep reading, and to be truthful I skim-read the rest.

All the way through it just felt as if I was being told a story. I don't like being told, I want to see. I couldn't connect with the characters at all. I was slightly disappointed after what was a promising first couple of chapters.

Saying all that, it was okay. The beginning and the end were better than the middle which kinda dragged. I didn't really dislike it I just stopped caring. The action towards the end was good but I don't know whether or not I'd read the next book, Firewalker. I have it already on my kindle. I most probably will at some point seeing as I have it already.

3/6 - It Was Okay

Review: Bonds of Justice (phy-changling #8) by Nalini Singh

Description (from Goodreads)

Max Shannon is a good cop, one of the best in New York Enforcement. Born with a natural shield that protects him against Psy mental invasions, he knows he has little chance of advancement within the Psy- dominated power structure. The last case he expects to be assigned to is that of a murderer targeting a Psy Councilor's closest advisors. And the last woman he expects to compel him in the most sensual of ways is a Psy on the verge of catastrophic mental fracture.

I had a hunger for a Phy-Changeling book after reading an excerpt of Hawk's story at the end of Singh's third book in the Guild Hunter series Archangel's Consort, and I just so happened to have Bonds of Justice in my To Read Pile :) I've been reading on my kindle non stop since christmas, so it was good to finally have a real book in my hands.

I'd forgotten how much I liked reading this series. I had the book for ages but held off reading it because the main two characters weren't changelings. I've always preferred them, and their story, to the phy. So it ended up getting pushed to the bottom of the pile and was then forgotten about.

Well I was wrong. I really liked it. This series just gets better and better (despite my prejudice towards the phy). The story had more depth to it than usual, and that was because of the fact that changeling's weren't the only focus of the story. Oh there's always the two sides; phy and changeling, but usually that pairing takes centre stage. And although Sasha (phy) and lucas (changeling) were very much apart of this story, it's very much Max (human) and sophie's (phy) story.

I really enjoyed it and I regret that I left it so long. I can not wait for the next book!

Rating: 5/6 - Really Like It

Monday, 7 March 2011

Monthly Round Up: February

Another good reading month! My favourites being Bitten and Hunger Games. As usual there are some re-reads (7) which won't count towards my 150 goal, so are not numbered. 15 a new so they DO go towards my goal :D I'm a little annoyed that I've only been able to link 5 reviews though. However I do have another 9 to write up when I stop being so lazy.

13. Stormwalker, Allyson James
14. Bonds of Justice, Nalini Singh
15. Fallen, Lauren Kate
16. Torment, Lauren Kate
17. Crescendo, Becca Fitzpatrick
18. Play for Passion, Nalini Singh
Half way to the Grave, Jeaniene Frost (RR)
One foot in the grave, Jeaniene Frost (RR)
At Grave's End, Jeaniene Frost (RR)
19. Some Girls Bite, Chloe Neill
20. Friday Night Bites, Chloe Neill
21. Twice Bitten, Chloe Neill
Moon Called, Patricia Briggs (RR)
Blood Bound, Patricia Briggs (RR)
Iron Kissed, Patricia Briggs (RR)
Bone Crossed, Patricia Briggs (RR)
22. Rebirth, Kelley Armstrong
23. This Side of the Grave, Jeaniene Frost
24. Bitten, Kelley Armstrong
25. Stolen, Kelley Armstrong
26. Dark Lover, JK Ward
27. Hunger Games

Total: 22

(RR = re-read)

Review: Archangel's Consort (Guild Hunter #3) by Nalini Singh

Description (from Goodreads)

Vampire hunter Elena Deveraux and her lover, the lethally beautiful archangel Raphael, have returned home to New York only to face an uncompromising new evil…

A vampire has attacked a girls’ school—the assault one of sheer, vicious madness—and it is only the first act. Rampant bloodlust takes vampire after vampire, threatening to make the streets run with blood. Then Raphael himself begins to show signs of an uncontrolled rage, as inexplicable storms darken the city skyline and the earth itself shudders.

The omens are suddenly terrifyingly clear.

An ancient and malevolent immortal is rising. The violent winds whisper her name: Caliane. She has returned to reclaim her son, Raphael. Only one thing stands in her way: Elena, the consort who must be destroyed

rchangel's Contort is the 3rd book in the Guild Hunter series. I read the first 2 early last year and really enjoyed them so I was eagerly waiting for this instalment to be released.

I seemed to get a little lost during reading. I found that I was reading it and then suddenly I would be confused and didn't know what was going on so had to re-read a page to see if I missed anything. I didn't connect with this book as much as I did with the others. I enjoyed it though. I love the relationship between Elena and Raphael. Is all consuming and kinda dangerous for them both, just my kind of thing :)

The first 1/3 is quiet slow going but it didn't feel like it dragged too much. There were plenty of sex scenes to keep you going until the plot rolled forwards. The world building continues to be spectacular, and in this instalment we learn some of Raphael's past which I enjoyed.

All in all a good installment. Only a another year to wait for book 4! Luckily Kiss of Snow -the next book in the Psy-Changeling series, is out in June. Clink on the link to read an unedited excerpt of chapter 1.

From the author's website: I'm currently at work on the next Guild Hunter book, titled Archangel's Blade. This book will focus on Dmitri and has a tentative release date of September 2011. :D :D :D

Rating: 4/6 - Liked It

Review: Magic at the Gate (Allie Beckstrom #5) by Devon Monk

Description (from Goodreads)

Allie Beckstrom's lover, Zayvion Jones, is a Guardian of the Gate, imbued with both light and dark magic and responsible for ensuring that those energies don't mix. But Zayvion lies in a coma, his soul trapped in death's realm. And when Allie discovers that the only way to save Zayvion is to sacrifice her very own magical essence, she makes a decision that may have grave consequences for the entire world.

Before I go on I have to just say, in case you get the wrong idea, that I'm still very much invested in this series. I'm just finding it easier to say what I don't like about it than what I do.

Magic at the Gate is book 5 of the Allie Beckstrom series. Again it's Allies inability to trust or listen to her dad that grated a little in the first 1/3 of this book. It slowly got worse as the story unfolded. Yes I know she could end up being right eventually; that daddy dearest could very well end up hurting her and her friends, but there has been tender moments from his part, yet she doesn't even acknowledge them. Even when she has memories of him missing meetings to be with her on her birthday (there were a few other memories that proves this point but i forget), yet she pays them no attention. I rolled my eyes for most of the first 1/3 of the book. I was hoping she'd have learnt to listen a bit more or at least get her priorities right (particularly at the end of chapter 17. I was praying that Shame would flip her off) but even though my frustration made me pause many times, it didn't stop me putting it down for good. I'm still interested. I just wish she'd stop pissing me off so much. I devoured books 2,3, and 4, and this one has been great in parts but if I'm being completely honest, she's kinda ruining it a little for me now. And as much as I love Shame (including his history and relationship with Terric) , I found I was missing Zay. He was absent for the majority of this book and for that I was a little sad.

Saying that, I would really really enjoy reading a Shame/Terric/Stone spin-off :D

Rating: 4/6 - liked it