Friday, August 31, 2012

Angels' Blood (Guild Hunter #1) by Nalini Singh

  • Title: Angels' Blood (Guild Hunter, Book 1)
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Urban Fantasy 
  • Format: Paperback, 368 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Original edition (March 3, 2009)
  • ISBN-10: 0425226921
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425226926
Author's Website:
Notes: Second time reading this one. 

This series redefines where vampires come from...

 In a world of supernaturals Elena Deveraux is a vampire hunter. She tracks, captures, and returns vampires to their angel masters. Only about a thousand people per year are chosen to be transformed. That is a small slice of those who volunteer for the change. In exchange for the transformation, the newly changed vamps are required to serve the angel who 'Made' them (their Master) for a certain length of time. When they attempt to renege on that agreement Elena and other guild hunters like her are called in.

With a reputation for being the best hunter Elena is hired by Raphael, an archangel, to track a fellow archangel, Uram. When angels go bad, well, it isn’t pretty. With secrets being divulged and a powerful angel out to kill her before she can find him, Elena isn’t all that hopeful she’ll make it out of this assignment alive. Add in the powerful attraction she feels toward Raphael and things get a little complicated.

I just love the world building and imagery that Nalini Singh displays in this series. Envision a world where angels fly in the sky over New York. Wouldn't that be an incredible sight to see? Would you be enthralled and awestruck like some of the people in Angel's Blood, or would you get used to it after a while and think it was no big deal? Now imagine vampires roaming the streets and having the power to truly enthrall you with their pheromone type scent that can get you all hot and bothered as they surround you in it.

In this series, the angels create the vampires and they become indentured servants for a period of 100 years to whichever angel Made them. Some angels are nice while others could make your life a living hell and you have no say about which angel you'll be entrusted to. Would a chance at immortality be worth it? Would you take a chance? Would the thought of seeing your loved ones perish before you do dissuade you? Would the benefits outweigh the downside of immortality? Think about it. Some of those who chose immortality obviously didn't, and that's when the Guild is called in to track down those who mean to renege out on that 100 years of servitude. Vampires gone rogue can bring carnage to those around them especially when they're newly Made.

Eleana is one of my favorite kick@ss heroines. She's strong, knows what she wants, and is determined enough to go after it. She's also hunter-born which means she is one of the best trackers of rogue vampires around because she can track them via their scent. She hasn't had an easy life and, as the book progresses, we get small glimpses of events that have shaped her into the woman and hunter she is today. As the series progresses, we'll learn more and more about the events we only get glimpses of in this first book. So if you are disappointed that all your questions weren't answered in this book, don't worry they're forthcoming.

Raphael is the Archangel who presides over New York. He's gorgeous but deadly. If he thinks you've obtained knowledge that could be used against his kind you will not live to tell about it. That is the dilemma that Elena faces. She knows by taking on the assignment laid before her, she may obtain information that could cause her life to be put in jeopardy. Her best friend, Sara, is in the Guild Director and she tried to persuade Raphael to commission a different Hunter for the job. Raphael, however, wanted the best hunter and that is Elena. He would hear of no other.

An archangel has many enemies. Every archangel has their own band of trusted warriors which consist of angels and/or vampires. Dimitri, is a vampire who works for Raphael and is one of the trusted Seven who guard him. What makes Dimitri so interesting is his outright dislike of Elena. At times I questioned if it was hate or attraction that he felt for Elena. I kept wondering as the book progressed if Dimitri's aversion to Elena would eventually cause a rift between him and Raphael. He definitely makes the book and the series more interesting.

Amidst all the action and drama, Raphael and Elena find themselves attracted to each other. Archangels, as Elena finds out, are a rather possessive lot and when two individuals with strong personalities come together, you know there's going to be fireworks of more than one variety. That, of course, is what makes their relationship so much fun to watch grow from a spark to something much, much more. *sigh*

Why is the book named Angels' Blood? Well, what's in an angel's blood is something that will become  very important and essential to understanding and capturing the killer. I don't want to reveal anything more because otherwise I'd probably start revealing some spoilers.

Overall, I gave this one 5 out of 5 roses. I truly loved all the action and drama in tracking down a totally insane immortal. It gets a little gory, but I grew up watching horror movies so I was fine with it. I loved the world Ms. Singh created. Some of the imagery it conjured in my head was truly breathtaking. I loved the relationship between Raphael and Elena--totally swoon worthy--and watching the two attempt to not let their feelings distract them from their ultimate goal of capturing Uram. The ending, which had something happen that I never would have predicted, was so good I knew immediately I had a new favorite author on my hands. Additionally, the fact that I actually reread this books speaks volumes. I hardly ever will reread a book or rewatch a movie. If I ever do that, it truly means the book or movie was something special. This is a series I HIGHLY recommend. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one gets a SHOWER rating--a cold shower is necessary (need I say more?). Some books should come with a warning - make sure your significant other is handy or your shower is in working order. lol

Order of Series:

Coming September 4th:

Romancing the Hop International Giveaway (August 31st - September 3rd)

Hosted by Carrie Ann

What is your favorite thing about Romance? Well, we authors are ready to share our romantic tips and favorite romance reads! Starting on Friday, August 31st, over 100 Authors and Bloggers will share their favorite things about romance, reading romance, and dating.

And while we do that, we are EACH doing a giveaway. Yep. There will be over 100 giveaways on each blog hosted by that Author or Blogger.

But that's not all....

We have THREE Grand Prizes. You as a reader can go to EACH blog and comment with your email address and be entered to win. Yep, you can enter over 100 times!

Now what are those prizes?

1st Grand Prize: A Kindle Fire or Nook Tablet
2nd Grand Prize: A $130 Amazon or B&N Gift Card
3rd Grand Prize: The Above Swag Pack!

Yep. ALL of that! Whoot! Be sure to check out all the blogs over the weekend to enjoy some stories and facts about our favorite Romance events and reads and enter to win!

How do you qualify to win one of the Grand Prizes?

Each time you leave a comment on a blog (NOT via Rafflecopter) you are entered. Meaning you can comment on ALL blogs. 

What do I love about romance novels?

I read just about anything under the sun when it comes to books, but you'll notice a heavy slant in the direction toward romances. Why? Well, I've always seen romances as my comfort reads. Some are lighthearted, some include more suspense, some include devastatingly handsome characters which sport pointy fangs or fur, but one thing they all have in common is that they all include something we all covet--LOVE.

They say love makes the world go round and I believe it. Whether it be love of money, family, friends, significant other, children, or even one's own self, I believe it is a crucial part of what makes us who we are. I've been reading romance for years and while I'm not a hundred percent certain what the first love story I ever read was, I'd wager it was either Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty.

Over the years I've been teased about my love of romances. My mother once banned me from reading them when I was in high school. She was going through her second divorce at the time and was of the mindset that they would poison my head with thoughts of fairy tale endings. Believe me, after watching my parents go through a divorce I was under no delusions that every marriage ends in a happily ever after. What I like about romance novels, however, is that they cater to the thought 'wouldn't it be nice if they did?' Well, most of the romances I read tend to gravitate toward that kind of ending.

With romances I can live a million lives and love as many times. I can be transported back in time to see how I might have been courted in Elizabethan or Victorian times. I can travel the world or stay right where I am. One thing is for sure, even if a person has a fairy ring growing in their backyard (like me) there's no guarantee that it'll magically transport them to another time or place, but a good book will. 'The Great Escape'  (which, incidentally, is the name of the book I'm reading below) is just a book away. 'Have book, will travel' is one of my mottos.

My favorite kind of romances are those of a historical or supernatural nature. When the two are combined (which sadly is not very often) I am in a state of utter bliss. Some of my favorite authors are Lisa Kleypas, Julia Quinn, Julie Garwood, Judith McNaught, Nalini Singh, Jeaniene Frost, Kresley Cole, Gena Showalter, and Christie Craig. Believe me the list goes on and on and I will probably wish later that I'd included more of them on my list. Once I latch on to an author I pretty much devour their books and love anything they've written. I love reading their early work as much as their later work and seeing how their writing style has varied and developed over the years.

I don't think I'd be very good at giving tips on dating (I've been married 20 years this past June), but here is some advice handed down to me about the secrets to a happy marriage:

- Nobody's perfect (not even you) so don't expect your spouse to be.
- Never go to bed at night angry with each other.
- At times you'll be tempted to, but try not to let yourself go. Make sure to wear make up and dress up every now and then.
- Never sweat the small stuff. Life too short to spend your time worrying over the little things. Leave that for the big things that come along.
- Always attempt to make 'we' time to keep the romance going.

So to enter my giveaway and the Grand Prize giveaway hosted by Carrie Ann, make sure you're a member of my blog and leave a comment about what your favorite things about romance novels are and  why.
(Yes, mushrooms have been growing all summer in my backyard in rings.)

My Giveaway:
I'm giving away a romance novel worth up to $10 (US Dollars) of the winner's choice from The Book Depository

Rules for Eligibility:

Only residents 18 years of age and from the countries included in the following list created by The Book Depository are eligible:

Additionally, some books from The Book Depository may not be available to be sent to your country and/or sent from the US. If this situation is encountered, the winner must choose a different book. Sorry, I had this happen with someone.

Please leave either your email address or a link to your Goodreads profile so I may get in contact with you to get your mailing address. No P.O. Boxes, please.

Become a follower of my blog, if you aren't already.

Winner will be randomly chosen. Giveaway ends September 3rd, at midnight Eastern time. Winners will be posted on my blog and notified by email or message posted to them via Goodreads. Winners will have 48 hours to respond before another winner will be selected. Good Luck!

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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Giveaway and Q & A - Blame It On Texas by Christie Craig

Meet Christie Craig

New York Times bestselling author Christie Craig grew up in Alabama where she caught lightning bugs, ran barefoot, and regularly rescued potential princes, in the form of bullfrogs, from her brothers. Today, she's still fascinated with lightning bugs and mostly wears shoes, but focuses on rescuing mammals and hasn't kissed a frog in years. She now lives in Texas with her four rescued cats, one dog--who has a bad habit of eating furniture--a son, and a prince of a husband who swears he's not, and never was a frog.

If Christie isn't writing, she's reading or just enjoying laughter with her friends and family. As a freelance writer, Christie also writes nonfiction books, including the humorous self-help/book Wild, Wicked & Wanton: 101 Ways to Love Like You're in a Romance Novel, as well as paranormal young adult romances under the pen name C.C. Hunter.

 Q&A with Christie Craig

Lisarenee:   Thank you so much for joining us today, Christie. I love the humor in your books. Do you enjoy writing all those fun and hilarious scenes as much as we do reading them?

CC: First, thanks so much for having me here at your Seduced by a Book blog. Bloggers are the greatest. Now to answer your question . . .

Honestly, if I had a dollar for every time I’m busy in my office and my hubby calls out from the kitchen, “What’s so funny?” I’d be a rich woman. Here's the thing, though. I love to laugh. Laughter is a constant in the Craig household. I come from a family of jokesters and storytellers. We laughed when things were good, and we laughed even harder when times were stressful. And I’ve carried on that tradition in my own family. What's more, I’ve given this trait to all my characters. Laughter is healthy, it’s my coping mechanism. And I personally believe that falling in love should be fun. Yes, I might keep a reader on the edge of their seat, toss in a little murder, and all my characters have a ton of baggage to deal with, but they all know how to laugh through the tough times.

Lisarenee: I imagine writing a story is a little like baring your soul to others. It's like giving your readers a front row seat to yourself--your humor, your wit, etc. Have you ever second guessed something you've put in a novel or been nervous about how something will be received?

CC: I’ve often compared writing to standing naked in front of a crowd. Maybe it's not this way with all writers, but for me, all my best kept secrets are exposed in my books. From what I find seductive in a man to my morals. To the food I love, to the kind of off-colored jokes I find funny, and to how I might kill someone if I really decide to go there. Sure, it’s fiction, but when something is pulled from a person’s imagination, you can bet there are some elements of truth in it. And yes, for some authors those truths are not so evident in their personality. I was once told by an Australian bookseller that she is often disappointed with she meets authors, because, by reading an author’s work, she begins to picture that author’s personality. Then when she meets them, some don’t fit the bookseller’s personal image of them. However, she told me I didn’t disappoint her. I was just exactly what she thought I was. And considering the crazy things I write about—like dead guys in porta potties, dogs that pass gas, characters playing strip scrabble—I thought that was pretty darn scary. LOL.

Lisarenee: What is your favorite part of writing a book? Is it completing it and letting it go, coming up with the idea and seeing it make its way to print, or something else entirely?

CC: My favorite part of writing is getting that first draft down on paper, not worrying about spelling or grammar. When the story seems to flow from my fingertips and I’m in that creative zone where the ideas, the funny dialogue just start spilling out of me, it's like magic. It's the greatest feeling in the world, too. I guess you say that my favorite part is the storytelling.

Lisarenee: What is the hardest thing about being a writer? Is it deadlines, negative reviews, keeping your stories 'fresh' and fun, etc or does it come easily to you?

CC: Now, deadlines can be stressful. But I can usually deal with those. Negative reviews? I can’t lie; in the beginning of my career, they stung. But I have since learned that reading is selective. It’s sort of like ice cream. Some people only love vanilla, and wouldn’t think about touching a banana sundae flavor. Not everyone will enjoy my flavor of books and that’s okay. But, the hardest part about being a writer, for me? Well, if storytelling is my favorite part, the hardest thing would be polishing the story. Getting those words perfect is like pulling teeth without the laughing gas. I’m dyslexic, and writing perfect copy is hard. I leave out words, get words backwards. I know how to spell for the most part, but when I write, I sometimes use the wrong word, like "right" for "write." Or I will leave out one letter in the word and I just can’t see those mistakes when I proofread my work. I have critique partners who help me. But sometimes I’ll tweak a manuscript and send it in without having them look at my last minute tweaks. And I have gotten in trouble. Before I was published, I entered contest and in one of those I had written a perfectly good sentence. He looked down at his bloody shirt. My hero, a cop on the run, had been shot and beat up and was hiding behind a shed at my heroine’s house. And he’d been there for several hours. The mistake I made was to leave out one letter. The "r" out of shirt. Let’s just say the comments were very interesting from the judges. i.e. So he had internal injuries, too, huh? LOL.

Lisarenee: One of the things I noticed on your website that surprised me was to learn you have dyslexia. I tried to access the link to the video on your website, but it didn't work. What would your advice be to anyone who would like to attempt a career as an author who might be dyslexic or have a similar condition that might hamper their writing? My daughter has an auditory processing disorder and I am always trying to find new ways of encouraging her that she can overcome anything associated with it. I usually tell her that she may never be a spelling bee champion, but she shouldn't let that keep her from writing.

CC: Sorry the link isn’t working. I need to take that off. It was supposed to be up forever and the paper changed their mind and I can’t get them to respond to me about getting a copy. Please tell your daughter and anyone out there to not let their disabilities hinder them from doing whatever they want. Does it mean it will be harder? Probably. But it didn’t stop me and it shouldn’t stop anyone. I seriously believe that I didn’t achieve my success in spite of the dyslexia, but in large part, I achieved success because of it. Most dyslexics are very intuitive and I believe this helped me write emotional characters. I think a person with disabilities can sometimes have gifts. She might be very creative, or have a real knack at writing emotions. She doesn’t have to spell to be a writer!!! Storytelling is so much more important. She can get help proofing her stories. If she’s a gifted storyteller, she can help other writers with the art of storytelling and plotting and they can help her with her typos and misspellings. Never, ever give up. It was my motto, it wasn’t always easy, but it was so worth it. I recently hit the New York Times and the USA Today best-sellers lists—not bad for girl who can’t spell "shirt." LOL.

Thanks again for inviting me here to your blog. If your readers want to know more about me and my books, they can find information at my website, For a little taste of my Hotter in Texas series, watch the video below. I hope you enjoy!


Lisarenee: Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to join us. 

Blame It On Texas
by Christie Craig
Book Synopsis:
Zoe Adams has always been content with her quiet nights at home, watching TV alone-until her life turns into a real-life episode of Unsolved Mystery Hunters. The story of a kidnapped girl triggers unexplained memories, and Zoe is dead-set on figuring out why. Her search leads her to one of the Lone Star State's richest families-and to sexy PI Tyler Lopez.

Tyler has sworn off women, especially redheads with killer curves who poke their noses into his clients' private lives. Still, he can't deny the attraction any more than he can deny that some of Zoe's crazy story makes sense. But when she becomes a hit man's target, this cold case starts heating up. Suddenly, Tyler will do anything to protect Zoe-even risk his heart.

I am giving away 3 copies of 'Blame It On Texas' by Christie Craig (One per winner/per household)

Rules to be eligible for giveaway:
1. Only residents of the US who are 18 years of age or older are eligible. 
2. Please leave either your email address or a link to your Goodreads profile so I may get in contact with you to get your mailing address. No P.O. Boxes, please. 
3. You must be a follower of my blog, if you aren't already.

Winners will be randomly chosen. Books will be sent directly from publisher. Giveaway ends August 30th,  midnight Eastern time. Winners will be posted on my blog and notified by email or message posted to them via Goodreads. Winners will have 48 hours to respond before another winner will be selected. Good Luck!

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Blame It On Texas (Hotter In Texas #2) by Christie Craig

  • Title: Blame It on Texas (Hotter in Texas)
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Contemporary Romance
  • Format: Paperback, 464 pages
  • Publisher: Forever (August 28, 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 0446582832
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446582834
Author's Website:

Nearly two decades ago a kidnapping took place. A little girl, Caroline Bradford, was taken from her wealthy family and later murdered. Her burnt body was recovered, but the killers were never found.

We've all seen the stories of someone recognizing themselves or someone else on a milk carton, but for Zoe Adams it was an airing of an episode of Unsolved Mystery Hunters that had her come face to face with a suspicion she'd held for years, but had never voiced. She was certain the little girl whose picture she'd seen on her TV screen was her, and she was determined to find out if she was right. She wanted the truth. Luckily, she had the good fortune to get a referral to the Only in Texas detective agency.

Tyler Lopez and his colleagues had once been cops. Someone framed them for a crime they didn't commit and they spent several years in prison before being exonerated. They weren't allowed back of the force, so they opened up their own detective agency called Only in Texas. When Zoe came to them looking for help and answers, she was hesitant to tell any of them her suspicions. As she expected, Tyler first thought she was either a fortune hunter looking for some easy prey or just plain crazy, but when someone starts threatening and shooting at her, he finally starts to take her seriously.

Both Tyler and Zoe have their own emotional baggage. Neither was looking for love or a relationship. Sometimes, however, fate has other plans...

     Zoe held out the tray with the fortune cookies on them. "You choose."
     "That's okay," he said.
     "You have to, it has your fortune in it." 
     He smiled, "You believe in that?"
     "A little bit," she said...
     "Never let the past stop you from making a future." He dropped the the paper on the table and pretended as if it held no significance to him. "Your turn."
     She opened it, put a piece of cookie in her mouth, and then read it...silently.
     She looked down at the slip of paper. "It's profound."
     "So read it". He leaned closer.
     She focused on the tiny print. "Be leery of men who cross-dressed in their youth."
     He laughed. "And I thought I could trust you."
     She grinned and stood up. "Ladies' room."
     He watched her walk away, then he noticed her fortune beside the half-eaten cookie  He reached for it.
     'Love is always a risk. But it's a risk worth taking.'

This was a very fun story. Ms. Craig has a wonderful sense of humor that carries over into her books. I always know I'm going to do a lot of chuckling when I open one of her books. In this book, we get an additional romance between two of the secondary characters which wraps up neatly by the end. 

I liked how Zoe is sweet, strong, smart, loyal and a tell it like it is type of person. She realizes how crazy her suspicions sound, yet she doesn't waver from her mission--to uncover the truth. Her feelings for Tyler are complicated by the fact she will be leaving Texas to step back into the life she left behind when she came to Texas. In her 'real life' she's a kindergarten teacher, but has been working as a waitress to make ends meat while living in Texas because she's paying for two apartments, the one she rents in Texas while trying to find out the truth and the one she calls home. Her plan was always to go back to her old life whether she turned out to be Caroline Bradford or just plane old Zoe Adams.

Tyler is another strong, smart, and loyal character. He also bears the emotional scars of a boy who witnessed the abusive relationship his parents had. While his father never abused Tyler or his siblings, his mother was another story entirely. Despite the abuse his mother endured, he has a great relationship with his siblings who can't seem to stop poking their noses into his business, but truth be told, he reciprocates in kind. Additionally, Tyler was deeply hurt when his former fiance married someone else and that caused him to be relationship shy. He is convinced he needs to date a different type of woman than he has in the past. One that doesn't want a commitment. That makes his attraction to Zoe extremely disturbing to him because she doesn't fit into his new self appointed type.

I loved the sexual tension which builds up between Tyler and Zoe that becomes so combustible each starts looking for an excuse to ease it. I loved how every time Tyler took off his shirt Zoe would get a little tongue tied and start bumping into things. I enjoyed seeing Tyler try to keep himself in check around Zoe because he was having a hard time keeping his hands off her.

One of my favorite funny moments was:
Realizing she'd have to ask Tyler for a hand, she looked back. "Do you want to get Lucky?"
His eyes widened, "Now?"
"Yeah" Hadn't he said she could bring her cat?
They stood staring at each other.
Finally he said, "I'm not sure now is the right time."...
"No, I cat, Lucky."

I gave this one 4 out of 5 roses. I enjoyed watching everyone piece together what happened all those years ago and seeing how everything fit together. The book had a nice blend of humor, drama, and romance. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating scale, I gave it a STEAM rating--too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. People may inquire as to why you looked flustered and flushed.

Order of series:

FYI, Only in Texas was formerly titled 'Don't Mess with Texas'

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Early Review of Whispers at Moonrise (Shadow Falls, #4) by C.C. Hunter

Author's Website:
Notes: I'm one of C.C. Hunter's Street Team

"Why does my life need to be so damn hard?"

Kylie Galen thought finding out what she was would make things better, but it didn't. If anything it just complicated things even more. She has finally discovered what type of supernatural she is, well, sort of. She knows the name, but not exactly what it truly entails. She is a chameleon and no one seems to know exactly what that is, but Kylie's hopeful it doesn't involve a tail and a really long tongue. Perhaps it explains her crazy brain pattern and why everyone has been having so much trouble reading it? She's still coming into her powers, and while she now knows what she is, she is about to discover what she is truly capable of, and it's quite spectacular. Chameleons are known for changing their colors to blend in, so you have to wonder what a supernatural chameleon can do?

Meanwhile, her ghost whispering skills are once again being called upon, but this ghost is the scariest by far because it looks like someone Kylie knows...and they're not dead! Is she now able to speak to people's ghosts before they've passed? If so, can she prevent their death? One thing Kylie knows from her previous experiences is that listening to a ghost can sometimes determine whether someone lives or dies.

Additionally, her father stated before he faded back into the land of the unliving that they'd find out what being a chameleon meant together. Does that mean she is going to die too?  So many questions, but the answers are forthcoming. One question posed toward the beginning of the book will gain more significance toward the end...

"Have you ever known the right thing to do, but couldn't do it?"

Kylie will need to make a difficult decision she wishes she didn't have to make. The irony is that the person who posed the question will be the one to finally make her see there truly is only one right choice for her and push her one step closer to finding her destiny. She'll come to realize, 'Life could still hurt like a paper-cut right across the heart...Every new day was about opportunities. You couldn't always control life, just your response to it.'

This was such a fun book with so much revealed yet leaving so much more yet to be discovered. I truly can't wait to see what the next, and sadly last, book of the series will hold. Is there anyway to sign a petition to extend the series? Each book seems to pull me deeper and deeper into the story.

In Whispers at Moonrise, Kylie will finally get to meet her paternal grandfather. He holds the answers she craves. She'll learn what a chameleon is and some of what one can do. She still hasn't gained her full powers and hasn't yet gained total control over those she currently possesses. New powers seem to randomly appear, but she'll find they aren't as random as she thought, and begin learning how to control them.

Lucas will show aspirations of gaining a seat on the were Council. He wants to make a difference. To do so, however, he has to gain his father's approval. He's secretive about what that entails, but asks Kylie to have faith in their relationship and in him.

Kylie will once again be haunted by a ghost and need to put her protective powers to use to save someone. The difference with this ghost is that it looks like someone Kylie knows and cares for. Holiday says sometimes ghosts can have an identity crisis and put on the face of someone else, but is that what is truly going on? She'll have to sort things out to get to the bottom of who the ghost is trying to warn her about before it's too late.

Why is the book named Whispers at Moonrise? I believe it has to do with this:
'Moonrise, she thought. She felt again the whispers echoing in her mind. Whispers she couldn't understand, whispers that both lured her and frightened her.'
Something is whispering for Kylie to come and join them in the forest. She'll need to decide whether to refrain from the compulsion or give in to it.

Overall, I gave this one 4 1/2 out of 5 roses. I loved the drama involved with the ghost. I loved the difficulty involved with Kylie's decision to stay or to go with her grandfather. I enjoyed the interaction with Holiday and seeing Kylie's powers go astray. I loved pretty much everything that went on, but felt things were a teeny bit dragged out when it came to discovering what a chameleon was. I thought enough clues were given at the end of Taken at Dusk to give everyone a good idea, but I did love some of the humor that went with the speculation. Action and emotion go hand in hand in this one, and I can't wait to see what Ms. Hunter has up her sleeve for the next book. This one will leave you craving for the next book, Chosen at Nightfall. I keep hoping for a spin-off series.

Order of Series:

Coming October 2nd:

Friday, August 24, 2012

Cover Wars: Which of Nalini Singh's covers for Angels' Blood is your favorite?

The following is a poll that is currently going on in Nothing but Reading Challenges, the online Goodreads Book Club that I help moderate. Which is your favorite cover for Angels' Blood? There are so many good ones I don't know if I can pick just one.

Want to get in on the fun of voting? CLICK HERE

Cover Wars: One Book, Multiple Covers, You Decide…
Book: Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh

Book covers have undergone an evolution! Gone are the days of plain Jane book covers. Today, covers have enough pizzazz and style to rival artistic master pieces. But with so many beautiful covers to choose from who can decide the fairest of them all? Cover Wars allows our members to view one book, its various international covers, and then decide their favorite. It’s our way of slowly finding the creme dela crème of book covers.

[IMPORTANT] If you find that you are having an especially hard time voting for your favorite cover, then feel free to leave a comment about your top five picks. Also, if you have a particular book that you would like to see in next month’s Cover Wars then shoot us a message or leave a comment.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Taken at Dusk (Shadow Falls, #3) by C.C. Hunter

  • Title: Taken at Dusk (Shadow Falls)
  • Classification: Young Adult (Ages 12 and up)
  • Genre: Paranormal
  • Format: Paperback, 400 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Original edition (April 10, 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 0312624697
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312624699
Author's Website:

     "I feel as if nothing in my life makes sense anymore. Everything is changing."
     Holiday wrapped her hair into a rope. "Change isn't the worst thing, Kylie. It's when things aren't changing that you have to worry." 
     "I disagree." Kylie dropped her chin down on her kneecap. "I mean, I know change is necessary for growth and all that stuff. But I'd like one thing in my life to feel...grounded. I need a touchstone. Something that feels real."
     Holiday raised her brows. "Shadow Falls is real, Kylie. It's your touchstone." 

Kylie Galen has gone through a lot of changes in a short time. She can see and talk to ghosts. She realized she had that power for a while, but it wasn't until recently that she learned she's not fully human, she's part supernatural as well. With each new ghost she encounters, she struggles to find out the meaning of what they're trying to tell her. While ghost whispering is the first power she acquired, it is not the only one she possesses. She is slowly coming into her full powers and it almost seems there's almost no limit to what she can do. The counselors and administration of Camp Shadow Falls, a camp for supernaturals, are miffed as to what she might be. At times she's displayed traits which have made them think she might be part fae, vampire, or werewolf. The thing is nothing can be ruled out yet because she could very well be any one of those. Too bad Shadow Falls doesn't have it's own personal sorting hat to tell her which group she should be in. That would make her life so much less complicated and make her feel like less of a supernatural freak. Of course, even if she knew where exactly where she fit in, could anyone really feel normal with ghosts hanging around making eerie declarations...

     "So many people want me to tell you something." 
     "Who?"  Realizing she'd whispered the word out loud, she bit her lip. Was it Daniel? Nana? What do they want you to tell me?
     The spirit met Kylie's gaze as if she understood. "Someone lives. Someone dies."

What Kylie doesn't yet realize is that the ghost who is currently haunting her doesn't come bearing just warnings, she holds the key to unlocking the mystery of Kylie's origins and power. Be prepared for a bumpy ride. Not everything is what it seems and Kylie will come that much closer to what the death angels decreed her to do...
"Go and uncover your past so you may discover your destiny."

This is my favorite book of the Shadow Falls series thus far. So much was going on and we finally discover what Kylie is. Yay! I wouldn't have guessed it, but it makes so much sense. :)

In Taken at Dusk, we find out more about the feared death angels who are rumored to haunt the Falls and dole out punishments. We learn more about FRU, the Fallen Research Unit, that Burnett works for and discover why Holiday is so leery of them. Kylie finally makes contact with a couple she believes to be her dad's adoptive parents. When the private investigator hired to find them turns up dead, however, the identity of that couple is called into question.  Additionally, Kylie seems to be having a bout of bad luck. She keeps finding herself in dangerous situations and barely missing harm. Can anyone truly have that many close calls or is something funny going on? Perhaps Kylie's just a little paranoid after all that happened when Mario abducted her?

Kylie finally chooses who she wants to be with, but will she second guess herself? Being attracted to a supernatural being has complications the rest of us can't imagine. Some Fae have the ability to manipulate your emotions. Werewolves apparently are master at seduction. So how is a girl supposed to know if what she is feeling is truly her feelings or something imposed upon her? It's clear that Kylie has feelings for both Derek and Lucas, but are relationships supposed to be so complicated at age 16?  Whenever it seems like she's made her choice something happens to make things even more difficult. In Awake at Dawn, Derek practically handed Kylie over to Lucas on a silver platter when he decided he needed to take a step back from her. Will she pick Lucas or wait for Derek to pull himself together?

Why is the book called Taken at Dusk? Well, I believe it has to do with this line:
     'The death angels took him at the last second of dusk.' 
If you want to know who lives and who dies, well, you're going to have to read the book. *smirk*

Overall, I loved this one and gave it 5 out of 5 roses. I felt it was the perfect blend of drama, suspense, mystery, humor, and action with a dash of romance on the side. The pace was fast and I found I couldn't put the book down until I finished. I can't wait to read the next book and luckily I don't have to. I received the ARC of Whispers at Moonlight and will start reading it tonight. Yay!  Since this is a young adult book and the romance is quite tame, I'm forgoing a romance rating. I HIGHLY recommend this book and series. I'm truly enjoying it.

Order of Series:

Coming October 2nd:

Winner of a $15 Amazon Gift Card

The Winner of a $15 Amazon Gift Card was:
Stephanie Huff


Thank you to everyone who entered. I think I'll be doing this again so keep an eye out for the next giveaway. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Early Review of Immortally Yours (Monster M*A*S*H #1) by Angie Fox

  • Title: Immortally Yours
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Paranormal Romance
  • Format: Paperback, 320 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks; First Edition edition (August 28, 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 0312546661
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312546663
  • Author's Website:

"How about a real case next time, Horace?"..."Just give me something interesting." Or at least the chance to save somebody. We'd lost three patients today. Maybe they'd have died on my table, too, but I owed it to these soldiers--and myself--to try to make a difference.

A war has been raging for centuries. The younger gods had declared war on the older ones and the two had been  battling for control ever since. Both are stubborn and determined to win. Everyone else is caught in the crossfire. There is one ray of hope, however. A prophecy handed down by the Oracles says a healer will put an end to the war. The first of three prophecies states, "A healer whose hand can touch the dead will receive a bronze dagger."

Little did Petra know her innocent request for a more interesting case would bring about the beginning of the end. Prophecies come in three and this was only the beginning. The first prophecy had just been set in motion when a new patient was set before her. Sometimes you need to be careful what you wish for because you just might get it...

I loved the world Ms. Fox created and the humor she infused within her story. There are minor gods in need of appreciation, a Kraken set loose in the bathroom, and sea serpents multiplying like rabbits. If you're looking for a serious read this is not it. This is a crazy, zany, lovable read that had me laughing, grinning, and shaking my head from start to finish.

Petra, a mortal who is half Fae, is a doctor working in a MASH unit for the new gods. She'd been drafted to work for them just as she was getting her paranormal clinic off the ground. She'd only been given one hour to sort out her affairs and close up shop before she found herself transported to the wastelands of Limbo where she'd been for the last seven years and would probably spend the rest of her life. Once drafted, you were pretty much theirs for the keeping because the commitment lasted until the end of the war and there was no end in sight.

Petra's is a fun character. She's got a good sense of humor, loves  books (she has a collection which includes books by Lora Leigh, Charlaine Harris, and Sherrilyn Kenyon ), and is very loyal. Despite the hopelessness of her situation she has a positive attitude and makes the most of the hand fate has dealt her. She's cool under pressure, which makes her a good doctor and able to handle crazy situations. The main thing about Petra, however, is she's been hiding a secret. She can see and talk to the dead. That is something she could be killed for so she guards that secret well. When she saves a handsome commander using her forbidden talent, she worries she's just signed her own death warrant and hopes he won't remember.

Galen of Delphi is a lovable character. He's Petra's deepest fantasy and darkest fear come to life. He's a demi-god described as being like a "Greek statue come to life. Only he was more. Much more." He's fiercely loyal to those he loves and a natural born hero. He's also a commander in the army and when he literally dies on her operating table she uses her ghostly ability to pull his soul back into his body. At first Petra fears he'll tell her secret and she'll lose her life, but it quickly becomes clear it might just be one particular part of her she might lose--her heart.

I love the relationship that develops between Galen and Petra. While Petra tries not to fall for the seductively handsome demi-god, it is fun to see his attempts to persuade her to take a chance and trust him in more ways then one. In this relationship Petra is the one who surprised me most. I didn't expect her to end up being quite as bold as she was with Galen when she finally gave in to his charm.

Some of my favorite quotes/moments:
'Both armies liked to poison their weapons. They usually used the blood of Medusa, or spittle from Cerberus, the three headed dog of the underworld. I'd even seen them use Britney Spears perfume. We actually preferred the last one. It smelled nice and it wouldn't kill any mortals on staff.'
- 'Galen moved toward me with all the grace of a predator. He knew I'd be back. His manner said it all."..."Blueberry?" he asked, lifting the bowl to me like he was offering the apple from the forbidden tree.' 
-  "Of all the immortals in limbo, you had to show up on my table."

Overall, I gave this one 4 out of 5 roses. This was a flirtatiously fun read that had a fast pace and a comical edge to it. It definitely contained my kind of humor and I truly enjoyed it. I loved the atmosphere Ms. Fox created amongst the MASH personnel which was reminiscent of the camaraderie and spirit I recall seeing while watching the TV series M*A*S*H years ago. I liked Petra's werewolf roommate who missed his wife and kids, and her vampire roommate who could never get enough privacy. Additionally, I think the series name, Monster M*A*S*H, is cute, clever and befitting. Petra encounters a number of monsters which she needs to escape from. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one scored a STEAM rating--too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. People may inquire as to why you looked flustered and flushed.


Thursday, August 9, 2012

Deception by Kris Kennedy

  • Title: Deception
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Romantic Suspense/Historical Romance
  • Format: Paperback, 384 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books (July 31, 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 1439195919
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439195918
Author's Website:

Sophia Darnly's world was tumbling down around her. She'd tried to escape her past, but the past has a habit of coming back to bite you. Her father, once a respected Judge, had been found to be corrupt and had been executed for his crimes. Sophia had gone into hiding and had married. Her husband, however, had died a year ago and now someone was coming after her, or more specifically, after her father's ledger. A ledger reputed to contain a detailed account of the corrupt dealings that transpired between her father and those rich and  powerful men who had bribed him.

Even though almost four years had passed since his death, there is still pertinent information documented in the ledger which could be used as a potential weapon. Someone wants that information and has burnt down Sophia's silk factory to make a point that they meant business. If she doesn't hand over the ledger she'll forfeit her life. So after several attempts to retrieve the ledger from Tomas Moneychanger, a ledger which was rightfully hers, she finally decided to resort to stealing it. That's where she unexpectedly ran into someone from her past. Someone who five years ago left without a goodbye and had broken her heart.

Kieran (aka Kier) was also looking for the ledger. It was part of his plan to exact vengeance on the man who had once wronged him in the worst way. Kier had set up an elaborate scheme which featured a mysteriously absent benefactress who owned a shipping company named Mistral Company. It transported luxury goods and was looking for clients and financial backing. The story was that Kier was Lady Mistral's factor (broker) and confidant. He planned to destroy the man who had once tried to destroy him. He knew him well enough to know how he worked, for he had once worked beside him. What he didn't expect was for Sophia to accidentally, through a misunderstanding, fall into the role of Lady Mistral. The two, who did not trust each other, were about to combine their resources and talents in an attempt to get what each of them wants--revenge for him and a way to stay alive for her. They say the enemy of my enemy is my friend. The question in these circumstances, however, is whether or not their shared  past will get in the way?

Ms. Kennedy has spun an intricate web of danger, deception, lies and secrets that all her characters are entangled in. Cosimo Endolte is the spider at the center who at times devours those around him. He is the Councilor to the King and described as being, "all but invisible, conducting his deals and seeing to his interests via a web of intermediaries and agents that would make a spider proud." Slowly we see the threads cut and those caught in Cosimo's web freed of their bindings as each new secret is unveiled.

Sophia is the type of character you have to admire. She doesn't get easily flustered and keeps her head when things go wrong. When figuratively one door closes, she looks to unlock another. A lesser woman would not handle all that's been thrown at Sophia as well as she does. She's smart, she's adaptable, and a touch stubborn. In some ways she's gullible, but she  learns from her mistakes. She should never be underestimated and Kier knows well enough not too. While he wishes she'd never gotten involved in his scheme, he knows an asset when he sees it. Her father had raised her well in the arts of deception and he'd use everything he could to his advantage.

Kier is the son of a pirate and at age 13 he left that life and ventured out on his own. He's smart, crafty and loyal to those he deems worthy which are few and far between. Five years ago he'd been an integral part of the Cosimo's inner circle, but due to a disagreement Kier had been marked for death. If you disagree with or betray Cosimo you are seldom given a second chances.  But one of Cosimo's faults is hubris. He thinks he's above reproach. That is what Kier is counting on to be his downfall.

The chemistry between Kier and Sophia is sizzling hot. Probably more than most because they'd once been in love,or so Sophia had thought. My favorite description of Kier is when Sophia walks in on him half naked as he's in the midst of exercising:
     Without turning his head, he said, "What is it, Sophia?" He lowered his body down again.
     She yanked her jaw shut, "I was...I thought to inquire..."
     His hair, untethered, fell across his cheek as he turned to look up at her, one palm still overturned at the small of his back. He was covered in a magnificent sheen of sweat. 
     The perspiration covering her was not magnificent. It was hot and uncomfortable, but he, he looked like a Greek statue in the rain. His arms and back were contours of sculpted muscle.

Overall I gave this one 5 out of 5 roses. I absolutely loved it. I loved the characters and finding out the many secrets as they were revealed. I was caught in the web of this tale which had layers to it that were uncovered as the story progressed. I also enjoyed finding out what really happened to Kier all those years ago that took him away from Sophia. A truly delightful read. I will definitely be reading more books by this author. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one scores a STEAM rating--too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. People may inquire as to why you looked flustered and flushed.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Early Review of Sins of a Virgin (The Sinners Trio, #1) by Anna Randol

  • Title: Sins of a Virgin
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Historical Romance
  • Format: Paperback, 384 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (August 28, 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 0062025791
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062025791
Author's Website:

Gabriel Huntford was a Bow Street runner. Seven years ago his life was changed when his twin sister, Susan, was murdered. Ever since he's been on a mission to find her killer. A killer who didn't just stop at one victim and still roams the streets of London. Her death is the reason he became a runner.

Before her death, his sister Susan had been involved with an aristocrat whose name her brother did not know. Now another murder has taken place and there was no mistaking he was the same killer. With that murder, a new piece of information has been revealed. The latest victim had been seen leaving with a gentleman. A gentleman who'd visited her before in a coach with a family crest containing some sort of animal. Using that information he's narrowed the list to seven possible suspects. Now he's been assigned to guard Madeline Valdan. A woman of questionable stature, but who may give him the answers he needs. Through her he may be able to peruse the financial records of his suspects and perhaps find a link to the murders. He never expected Madeline, however, to look like every man's fantasy. The type of woman who could tempt a saint to sin...and he was definitely no saint.

At the age of 14 Madeline Valdan was imprisoned for murder. While serving her sentence in  Newgate prison she was found by Sir James Glavenstroke who recruited her and two others to be spies for the Crown. The group, code named Trio, were the best of the best and had saved countless lives and were invaluable during the war. Now, 10 years later, the war has ended and their services are no longer needed. Armed with a measly government stipend, not worthy even of a foot soldier, and a pardon for their crimes, they were let loose into the world. Madeline having a very narrow skill set could think of only one commodity she had left to sell...

     Madeline trailed a hand slowly down her hip. "I bring you something for sale." She nodded at offers shouted by several of the bolder gentlemen to share their beds for the night. "Not quite. I'm here to inform you of an auction."
     "What's being sold?" asked the overdressed and overfed Colonel Willington.
     She scanned the room, gauging the reactions. Excellent. Every single one of them strained tor her answer. She waited three more heartbeats before answering. "My virginity."


I wasn't sure what to expect with this book, but I was intrigued. Madeline is smart and strong, but she has no family to fall back on or friends other than her two fellow spies. She considered marriage for a fleeting moment, but with no ready prospects and not liking the idea of being under a man's thumb, she tossed the notion aside.  So instead of thinking small scale she thought big, hoping that if she planned it right, she'd only have to sell herself once. So Madeline being the type of woman she was, came up with a plan.

She spent what little money she had on a slightly daring wardrobe, housing in London, and someone to guard her. She decided the best way to make someone think you had something of worth was to act like it was so valuable it was worth guarding. She never dared to suspect that she'd actually need guarding, but someone, be it a disgruntled associate from her spying days or a suitor upset because he can't afford her, is out to harm her. Lucky for her she has Gabriel, her own personal guardian angel, to protect her. The question is who would save her from him?

Madeline is a expert manipulator. That was her most highly prized skill when she worked for the government. She seduced men to gain needed intelligence England could utilize during the war. Her mantra would probably be, "Every man has a weakness...Any weakness can be turned into an advantage."

Gabriel is described being somewhat altruistic. He has a urge to protect others. While described as "not precisely handsome", he had an affect on Madeline that slowly grows stronger until neither of them can deny it. While he is attracted to her, he is also a bit appalled by the idea of her selling herself.

I truly enjoyed this one. There is the mystery of who killed his sister, who is behind the attacks on Madeline, and the question most of London is asking, "How do we know you're a virgin?"
Madeline's response is, "It's a gamble, is it not? And that, gentlemen, is why you will have to bid and bid well." 

Overall, I gave this one 4 1/2 out of 5 roses. A fun and witty read with a lot going on. On the Lisarenee  Romance Rating Scale, this one gets a STEAM--too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. People may inquire as to why you looked flustered and flushed.

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