Saturday, 31 August 2013

My book of the month- Magic Rises by Ilona Andrews

Each month I highlight my book of the month, the book that I devoured, squeeeed over, swooned over or cried buckets of tears over. This month's book of the month Magic Rises by Ilona Andrews is the sixth book in the Kate Daniels series and is now my favourite book in the series. If you haven't read this series and like a bit of urban fantasy then you need to reshuffle your TBR pile and start the series from the beginning you will love it!

Magic Rises
Kate Daniels #6
Ilona Andrews
Publication date: 30th July 2013

Atlanta is a city plagued by magical problems. Kate Daniels will fight to solve them—no matter the cost.

Mercenary Kate Daniels and her mate, Curran, the Beast Lord, are struggling to solve a heartbreaking crisis. Unable to control their beasts, many of the Pack’s shapeshifting children fail to survive to adulthood. While there is a medicine that can help, the secret to its making is closely guarded by the European packs, and there’s little available in Atlanta.

Kate can’t bear to watch innocents suffer, but the solution she and Curran have found threatens to be even more painful. The European shapeshifters who once outmaneuvered the Beast Lord have asked him to arbitrate a dispute—and they’ll pay him in medicine. With the young people’s survival and the Pack’s future at stake, Kate and Curran know they must accept the offer—but they have little doubt that they’re heading straight into a trap…

Kate Daniels series reading order

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Review: Blind Attraction by Eden Summers

17725275Blind Attraction
Reckless Beat #1
Eden Summers
Publication date: 28th May 2013

Be prepared to fall for Mitchell Davies that's my advice. As you know if you are a regular at My keeper shelf, I have a certain fondness for rock star romances and even had a gigantic post highlighting my all time favourites, it's very safe to say that Blind Attraction will need to be added to my list. It was goooooood.

Alana has had a pretty sheltered upbringing as a result of the influence of her mother and her past experiences so she's quite innocent but open to spreading her wings a little bit further. When Alana catches the eye of Reckless Beat guitarist and rock god Mitch at a gig he has his sights firmly set on her and wants to find her after the band finish. When an ex-employee of the band lashes out after the gig Alana is caught in the crossfire and her eyesight is temporarily affected Mitch steps in to look after her because although he's a rock god guitarist he's also just that little bit swoon worthy. This of course gives Mitch and Alana plenty of quality alone time together.

For Mitch, Alana isn't the normal type of groupie in fact she's the anti-groupie that he really wants and for Alana, Mitch is her opportunity to experience a little bit of the real world (and he's a hot rock god- say no more!). With some really steamy scenes Blind Attraction kept me glued to the page and I defy anyone to read it and not fall for Mitchell Davies he's exactly the rock god character that I love. I can't wait for more Reckless Beat adventures. And look! Reckless Beat even have their own website now click here to see it and prepare to swoon.


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Monday, 26 August 2013

Review: Shadows by Paula Weston

The Rephaim #1
Paula Weston
Publisher: Orion's Children
Publication date: 3rd January 2013

A lot goes on in Shadows by Paula Weston but I have the feeling that this is a series which will be well worth following.

Gaby survived the car accident that her twin brother Jude died in and a year later she is still grieving and her memories of both the accident and their lives before the accident are still pretty much a blank.

After posting online some stories based on the strange and violent dreams she has been recently having one of the men from her dreams known as Rafa strangely arrives in Pan Beach and claims to both know her and her brother and demands to know how Jude died and why Gaby survived. With photographs on his phone to prove he was a friend of her brother Gaby can't understand why she has never even heard of Rafa and things get even stranger for Gaby when she is attacked by 2 other people who arrived out of nowhere but seem to know her and demand that she tells them why she betrayed them. Everyone seems to expect that Gaby will fight back but she doesn't know how and has to be eventually rescued by Rafa.

It becomes clear to Gaby that she's had a waaaay more interesting life than she previously thought in short, the life she thought she had in Pan Beach has all been a lie and that some unknown person has wiped her memories and created new ones for her.

See what I mean about a lot going on? It's here the world building in Shadows gets even more interesting. Basically, Semyala was the leader of the fallen angels and they broke out of hell 140 years ago and for a 48 hour period partied hard and impregnating virgin girls and then disappeared never to be found again despite a hoard of demons searching for them. The resulting offspring including Rafa, Gabe and Jude are immortal half angels who can shift from place to place in the blink of an eye and are known as the Rephaim. The Rephaim which seem to have divided into 2 factions with Gabe and her brother on opposing sides, continue to search for their fallen angels fathers willing to hand them over once found to the angelic host as way of convincing the angels that the Rephaim are not a threat to mankind unlike their fathers. I have to say once I got my head around all of this I was more than intrigued. I loved the little twist that Rafa and Jude appeared to be on one side with Gabe firmly on the other especially since Gabe now has to rely on Rafa until her memories come back their flirty frenemies relationship was particularly delicious especially with Gabe's ex-boyfriend still in the equation.

Overall, Shadows does suffer a little bit from the dreaded first in a series syndrome with quite a lot of necessary world building and character information. It took me a while to work out who was in what faction and why but in saying that, I really enjoyed the story. As I finished Shadows I had, like Gaby, a tonne of questions in my head. Who can Gaby really trust? Who wiped her memories and why? What has really happened to her brother? As a result I've already been straight off to Amazon to buy the next instalment Haze and I'm adding Shadows to my list of favourite Aussie YA books. 

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Friday, 23 August 2013

Review: Just One Day by Gayle Forman

Just One Day
Just One Day #1
Gayle Forman
Publisher: Random House
Publication date: 10th January 2013

I read Gayle Forman's Just One Day on holiday a good few weeks ago and I've been unable to get it out of my head ever since. I loved Gayle's previous books If I Stay and Where She Went and can vividly remember sitting at my kitchen table bawling my eyes out with my daughters looking at me in a "Mummy's clearly went a bit mad what do we do" kind of way. Forman's books seem to be guaranteed to bring out all kinds of emotions for me.

Basically Just One Day is the story of Allyson "Lulu" Healey and Dutch boy Willem De Ruiter's short time together and the huge impact this one day had on Allyson. Allyson is a kind of straight laced American teenager, her tour of Europe has been a bit too touristy and therefore disappointing but this changes when she meets actor and traveller Willem and they connect in the most amazing way. He offers to take her to Paris for the day and show her the real Paris that the tour buses miss. Their one day in Paris which is full of fun and flirty adventures leads to one night together but when Allyson wakes up Willem has gone, as in really gone and he doesn't come back.

For me, the real story in Just One Day was how Allyson was absolutely wholeheartedly affected by their one day together. Not knowing what exactly happened to Willem or why he left her without even a thought leaves Allyson feeling she that couldn't have been enough for someone like Willem to stay with. Almost crawling into a little ball for protection, Allyson spends the next few months in her first year of college like a girl who has been devastated by a full on break up with long term boyfriend. Withdrawn, heartbroken and lost Allyson seems unable to enjoy her college experience and her once perfect grades are affected.

With the help of her only new friend Dee (who I loved to bits) thankfully Allyson gradually starts to come back to life and decides that she has to face her fears, go back to Paris and try to resolve the mystery of what happened to Willem. Without financial help from her parents Allyson first needs to get a job to pay for her trip and the French lessons she decides are necessary. I loved Allyson's gradual reawakening as she throws off her cautious, mousey pre-Paris self and finally grows a set! Her trip back to Paris isn't the tour bus trip, this time she's prepared, can speak French and isn't afraid of veering off the beaten track and befriending people along the way to help her on her quest.

For me a book is really, really special when I can make a list of swoon worthy scenes or quotes which sum up how amazing the book was for me and Just One Day has so many to choose from:
  • Double happiness- two halves finding each other,
  • Love being a stain,
  • Real travelling is getting lost in a city,
  • The next accident will send you somewhere new,
  • Taking real pictures on the barge trip along the Seine,
  • Lulu and Will on one bike cycling around Paris,
  • Seeing Shakespeare's As You Like It in the park,
  • Having a bucket list of paintings to see. 
Just One Day is exactly the kind of beautiful but heart breaking YA book that I adore, Allyson's coming of age story literally swept me away and I'm still thinking about it weeks later. Willem really did change Allyson's life in one day but she managed to find herself again all by herself. I can't wait to see Willem's point of view when Just One Year is released on the 10th of October.

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Thursday, 22 August 2013

Cover reveal - That One Summer by C.J. Duggan and a little giveaway

I'm so excited to be taking part in the cover reveal for one of my favourite authors the very lovely Aussie C.J. Duggan author of the A-MAZ-ING Summer series. Take a peep!
Gorgeous or what? And here's the blub:

Loving Chris Henderson would be wrong. Diabolically disastrous. I mean, what is there about him to love? He’s moody, bossy, brooding, a control freak, and that’s on a good day … but there was one achingly obvious fact that haunted my every thought, every minute of every day …

He sure could kiss.

As the countdown to the new millennium begins, there is one thing everyone agrees on: no one wants to be in Onslow for New Year’s Eve.

So that can only mean one thing: road trip!

No longer the mousey, invisible, shy girl from years ago, Tammy Maskala is finally making up for all those lost summers. A new year with new friends, which astoundingly includes the bossy boy behind the bar, Chris Henderson.

She likes her new friends (at least most of them), so why does she secretly feel so out of place?

After chickening out on the trip, a last-minute change of heart sees Tammy racing to the Onslow Hotel, fearing she’s missed her chance for a ride. The last thing she expected to meet was a less-than-happy Onslow Boy leaning against his black panel van.

Now the countdown begins to reach the others at Point Shank before the party is over and the new year has begun. Alone in a car with only the infuriating Chris Henderson, Tammy can’t help but feel this is a disastrous start to what could have been a great adventure. But when the awkward road trip takes an unexpected turn, Tammy soon discovers that the way her traitorous heart feels about Chris is the biggest disaster of all.

Fogged up windows, moonlight swimming, bad karaoke and unearthed secrets; after this one summer nothing will ever be the same again.
Argggggghhhhh It's Chris! this makes me a very happy bunny:)

Summer by C.J. Duggan series reading order
Website  |  Twitter  |  Facebook  |  Goodreads
The Boys of Summer- Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Barnes & Noble
An Endless Summer - Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Barnes & Noble
Up for grabs today is a signed copy of The Boys of Summer or An Endless Summer by C.J. Duggan and 6 digital copies of The Boys of Summer or An Endless Summer all you need to do is enter via the Rafflecopter thingy below.
Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #22

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine
As the queen of pre-orders I thought I would join in with the Waiting on Wednesday meme highlighting some of the upcoming books that I’m keen to get my hands on.
Bound by Night
Moonbound Clan Vampire #1
Larissa Ione
Publication date: 24th September 2013
Nicole Martin was only eight years old when the vampire slaves rose up in rebellion and killed her family. Now she devotes her life to finding a vaccine against vampirism, hoping to wipe out her memories—along with every bloodsucker on the planet. But there’s one thing she cannot destroy: her searing, undeniable attraction for the one man she should hate and fear the most . . .

A member of the renegade vampire MoonBound Clan, Riker is haunted by demons of his own. When he recognizes Nicole and remembers how her family enslaved his loved ones, his heart burns for vengeance. But when he kidnaps Nicole and holds her in a secret lair, his mortal enemy becomes his soul obsession, his greatest temptation, and, perhaps, his only salvation—a hot-blooded lover who could heal him with her touch . . . or bury him forever.

I really enjoyed Larissa Ione's Lords of Deliverance series so I'm keen to get my hands on Bound by Night the first book in her new Moonbound Clan Vampire series (although I do think Moonbound Clan Vampire sounds a bit bonkers!)

Monday, 19 August 2013

Review: Perfect Fling by Carly Phillips

perfect flingPerfect Fling
Serendipity’s Finest #2
Carly Phillips
Publisher: Berkley Books
Publication date: 30th July 2013

Perfect Fling is actually my first Carly Phillips book, I know where have I been? She's writes amazing contemporary romance and I love reading amazing contemporary romance so why she's never been on my radar I have no idea, but after devouring Perfect Fling I think I'm going to have a blast catching up with her back catalogue.

Assistant D.A. Erin Marsden is a sensible, smart, good girl but after watching all the loving couples at a wedding she heads to the bar looking for a little company for the night and comes across Cole Sanders. Cole was the town's resident bad boy after dropping out of the police academy before graduation he left town and surfaces only occasionally. After a drink or two Erin and Cole have a one night stand and low and behold three months later Erin not only finds out that's she's pregnant but that she has also become the target for some sort of crazy stalker. So when Cole finds out Erin is in danger the father to be steps in to protect her.

Ahhh Cole *le sigh* what can I say? What a guy! He's not the deadbeat drop out that everyone thinks he is and is actually an undercover cop in Manhattan often under deep cover for a year at a time. It drove me slightly crazy that Cole never corrected people about their lowly opinions of him. I got that it kind of suited him in that it stopped the nosey locals from asking questions about him but I honestly wanted to scream out loud on his behalf! I especially wanted to put his father straight especially since he had been outright cruel and nasty towards his son pretty much since childhood and as a result Cole just didn't think that he actually deserved a decent and nice woman like Erin in his life. After leading such a solitary life when Erin does come into Cole's life she's like a breath of fresh air to him that he didn't even realise he even needed.

I loved Erin's character too, she really sees something in Cole that no one else ever has and I loved her for it. Forced together whilst Erin's stalker is on the loose Cole steps in as the protector (getting more book boyfriend points from me- and he even cooks for her!) and they inevitably end up in bed together. Cole is however, honest with Erin telling her that he can't and won't commit to her so its up to the very determined Erin to change his mind.

I often find a lot of the current contemporary romance books are just too short for me, not so Perfect Fling. That extra length allowed both the story of the stalker to unfold and for Cole and Erin's initially forced relationship to change and grow. All in all Perfect Fling left me feeling a lot more satisfied as a reader and now I have the added bonus of discovering a whole Carly Philips back catalogue of books to devour, I might just be in contemporary romance heaven. 5 out of 5.

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Sunday, 18 August 2013

New books and what's on my TBR list

Hey everyone!
I had a pretty good week book wise with some cool stuff turning up.
 For review
 Rule by Jay Crownover 
The Edge of Never by J.A. Redmerski
Wait for You by J. Lynn
This very yummy #book boyfriend cookie

I also got a signed ARC of Drawn Together by Lauren Dane
I love her Brown Siblings series so I was delighted to get a copy from NetGalley last week but a signed copy to keep is even better!

I did a little happy dance when I got Nalini Singh's Archangel's Legion for review, Nalini is one of my all time favourite authors so I started reading Archangel's Legion straight away. I also got Caught Up In You by Roni Loren for review too, it looks steamy!
The very lovely C.J. Duggan sent me a signed copy of her first book The Boys of Summer all the way from Australia. Thanks C.J. it's now on my real "signed" keeper shelf.
From Netgalley
I picked up Run to You by Charlotte Stein and Revealing Us by Lisa Renee Jones because a girl can never have enough steamy books to read.
I bought
 Two Wrongs, One Right by Katee Robert, Wolf Fever by Milly Taiden
and Into the Deep by Samantha Young

I've been listening to Winterblaze by Kristen Callihan on audio book and really loving it and I read The Story Guy because the amazing Ruthie Knox said it was fabulous and do you know what? She was totally correct! 

 Next up
 Archangel's Legion of course!
I'm also planning on reading Revealing Us by Lisa Renee Jones and Drawn Together by Lauren Dane and maybe catching up with some blog hoping and review writing.

Have a good week!

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Review: MacRieve by Kresley Cole

Immortals After Dark #13
Kresley Cole
Publication date: 2nd July 2013
Reviewed by Lesley

I love Kresley Cole's books and have a full shelf of her Immortals After Dark series but even as a fan I thought there was something extra special about MacRieve.

The first half of MacRieve saw the usual fated bride/mate, that insta-love I always expect from the IAD series, but it was the second half of the book that really grabbed my attention because MacRieve's history is just that little bit different and a whole lot of heartbreaking.

Basically MacRieve as a young boy he was sexually abused by a Succubus, because he was so young he was powerless against her as she fed off him, with her claws fully in him not seeing her was physically painful for him. When his parents found out his mother was killed in the confrontation and one day later his father joined her as he couldn't live without his mate. Uilleam MacRieve blames himself and has never been able to forgive himself and hundreds of years later his hatred of all Succubus still burns bright.

Chloe Todd is a talented female footballer heading for the Olympics she's determined and feisty but she's starting to change and has no idea what is happening to her. Her father throws a book about the Lore to her and disappears leaving Chloe on her own and very vulnerable. When Chloe is kidnapped and put up for auction for the highest bidder, the price on her head is high as unknown to her Chloe's father has been targeting creatures of the Lore who now want a piece of Chloe in revenge.

With a little help from Nix (I loved her cameo's and sooo want her book!) Will and his brother Munro aka hot and hotter arrive at the auction and it's here Will realises Chloe is his mate which means he has to rescue her. Seeing their little blossoming love story in the first half of the book made me fall for both characters, they were so good together but being with MacRieve triggers Chloe's full change and the Lore creature she turns into means that MacRieve's hopes of happiness with his mate go straight out the window.

From nearly lovers to enemies this is where the story really takes off like a rocket. Will flips his lid, caught between his need to protect and provide for his mate he is also blinded by hatred and is a real shit to her and I mean a real shit. I loved Chloe's reaction from bewilderment and fear she pulls her football socks up and gets on with things determined to escape from his clutches she gives MacRieve as good as she gets.

I loved MacRieve's damaged kind of hero, we see how amazing he can be as the protector and how tragic his childhood was and the lasting effect it has had on him so it's almost impossible not to shed a few tears on his behalf. Both characters are feisty and stubborn and obviously a match made in heaven but it's not easy to forget 900 years of hatred despite a powerful mate bond. For me, there was just something special about MacRieve it really tugged at my heart strings and the warring couple then made me snigger with laughter. All in all I loved it.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Waiting on Wednesday #21

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine
As the queen of pre-orders I thought I would join in with the Waiting on Wednesday meme highlighting some of the upcoming books that I’m keen to get my hands on.
Dark-Hunters #23
Sherrilyn Kenyon
Publication date: 3rd September 2013

Just when you thought doomsday was over...

Centuries ago Acheron saved the human race by imprisoning an ancient evil bent on absolute destruction. Now that evil has been unleashed and it is out for revenge.

As the twin to Acheron, Styxx hasn’t always been on his brother’s side. They’ve spent more centuries going at each other’s throats than protecting their backs. Now Styxx has a chance to prove his loyalty to his brother, but only if he’s willing to trade his life and future for Acheron’s.

The Atlantean goddess of Wrath and Misery, Bethany was born to right wrongs. But it was never a task she relished. Until now. She owes Acheron a debt that she vows to repay, no matter what it takes. He will join their fellow gods in hell and nothing is going to stop her.

But things are never what they seem, and Acheron is no longer the last of his line. Styxx and Acheron must put aside their past and learn to trust each other or more will suffer.

Yet it’s hard to risk your own life for someone who once tried to take yours, even when it's your own twin, and when loyalties are skewed and no one can be trusted, not even yourself, how do you find a way back from the darkness that wants to consume the entire world? One that wants to start by devouring your very soul?

Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark Hunter series was one of my early favourites and I loved Acheron's book something fierce but then the series got a bit samey so I didn't read the last three books. I definitely want to read Styxx's book, I hope it's as epic as his twin Acheron's book and from the pictures Sherrilyn has posted of the manuscript it looks enormous!

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Review: Lick by Kylie Scott

Stage Dive #1
Kylie Scott
Publication date: 1st July 2013

What a seriously FAN-tastic Rock Star romance! Who amongst us hasn't dreamt of marrying a bad boy rock star? If you have then Lick is right up your street.

Evelyn gets roaring drunk in Vegas with friends and wakes up the next morning with not only an enormous hangover but with a huge wedding ring on her finger and her new husbands name tattooed on her arse. Lying beside her is David Ferris guitarist and all round rock god from the super hot band Stage Dive and he is now Evelyn's brand new husband.

Instead of wanting a quickie annulment (a la Britney Spears) David actual wants Evelyn and is quite annoyed that she remembers nothing about their night together because he does remember and he thought that they had really clicked. It's a bit of a shame that Evelyn is initially drawing a blank because it becomes clear that David is an artistic, romantic and oh so smexy rock star and now via the interwebz the entire world knows that they're married.

I love a good rock star romance and Lick is definitely worth adding to my favourites list. It's impossible not to fall for David because he isn't the usual kind of rock star womaniser, he's sensitive as well as funny (he declares that "topless cuddles are best") and he really wants their marriage to work. As Evelyn learns to finally stand up for herself and do what she wants to do in life I found myself cheering for them to work it out and stay together. This looks like the start of a good new rock star romance series and I'm so glad that fellow band member Mal's book is next in the series his cries of "child bride" every time he saw Evelyn had me laughing out loud.


Monday, 12 August 2013

Review: Blood of the Pride by Sheryl Nantus

17405720Blood of the Pride
Blood of the Pride #1
Sheryl Nantus
Publication date: 13th February 2012
Reviewed by Lesley

This is a strange one for me, I listened to the audio book of Sheryl Nantus's Blood of the Pride rather than reading it as I normally would and I think the god awful narration has really affected my opinion of the book. Although the heroine Reb came across really well the narrator made the hero reporter Brandon came across as far too upbeat and beyond annoying, the pride alpha Jess sounded more like a posh granny than a powerful alpha and the narrators Irish accent for the doorman made me honestly laugh out loud it was the worst accent I have ever heard! I found it so off putting I really struggled with listening to this to the end.

That being said I quite enjoyed the story. Shifter Rebecca Desjardin's parents died when she was young leaving Reb unable to fully shift. As a result, Reb then finds herself being cruelly banished from the pride and ends up in foster care. Despite this, Reb survived on her own and now works as a private investigator in Toronto. When a photograph of a dead "cat woman" ends up in the local newspaper courtesy of local journalist Brandon Hanover, the pride call on Reb to investigate the murder of the pride member. Reb agrees to work with Brandon to track down the killer who has risked the secrecy of the pack.

I quite liked the fact that the pride wasn't the normal kind of "pack" seen in other shifter books. It wasn't quite the supportive tight knit family I expected instead the alpha and her pack are cold, hostile and judgemental, hell-bent on keeping their existence a secret at all costs. Pack justice is equally cold and deadly as Reb discovered as a teenager so it was easy to cheer and support Reb as she was forced to deal with the pack politics again. Although I would only give Blood of the Pride 3 out of 5 I am intrigued enough to want to carry on with the series but I'll definitely read the next instalment rather than listen to the audio book.

Sunday, 11 August 2013

New books and other stuff

Hey! Here's the books I got over the last two weeks:

 For review
I love Amanda Carlson's Jessica McClain series so I did a giant happy dance when Amanda's publisher sent me Cold Blooded and as a member of her Street Team I've even got a name check in the acknowledgements!

 From Netgalley
I've been trying not to request too many books from Netgalley but I couldn't resist these three! I picked up Born Wild book 5 in Julie Ann Walker's Black Knights Inc. series, Drawn Together which is book 6 in Lauren Dane's The Brown Siblings series and Perfect Fling by Carly Philips.

I won
I won a copy of Love Me by Diane Alberts from the lovely Claire over at Claire's Book Corner, if you haven't checked out her blog the link is in the Blogs I Love list on the right.
I bought
I bought Wrong Ways Down by Stacia Kane which is Terrible's POV and as Downside Ghosts is one of my all time favourite series I'm ditching all books to read it! I also bought Biting Bad by Chloe Neill I've been following this series but didn't like the last book too much but early reviews I've read suggest this one is much better. I bought Magic Rises last week and devoured it super quickly it was OUTSTANDING you can check out my review here.
I picked up a couple of little kindle bargains too Pitch Perfect by Sierra Dean, The Loneliest Alpha by T.A. Grey and Moonlight by Lisa Kessler. 

I've been reading loads of fab dragon shifter books recently so I posted a list of my favourite dragon shifter books, click the yummy picture below to see the post.

Have a good week everyone.