Thursday, February 28, 2013

March's Make A Wish Reading Challenge

As many of you know, I am the moderator of an online Goodreads book club. I recently became the moderator of a second book club, Who's Your Author?, which read mainly Paranormal Romance and Urban Fantasy. The following is a challenge I posted in that group. If you're interested in joining us, please feel free to do so. I had a blast creating this one and hope you enjoy it.


The Invitation: 

 photo goldeninvitation2_zps52142af6.jpg

To get to the event on Goodreads, CLICK HERE.


The Challenge:

Dear Members,

Dawn, Sandra, Alisa and I met up the other day in a quaint little Dublin cafe to discuss our plans for the group. While talking over tea and coffee, we noticed an unusual poem engraved in tiny script on the wall near our table. Here's a picture Sandra snapped with her cell phone:

   photo oldparchmentpoem_zps09a66ce8.jpg

Now, we wish we could share with you the directions to where we found the leprechauns, but the following morning once our task was complete, all written instructions and memories of the journey were gone. We went back and tried to find the cute cafe in the heart of Dublin we'd been at the previous afternoon only to find it gone as well and when we inquired about it no one knew of the place we were talking about. That previous day had been the 20th. It was the last of the seven full days and night the message was said to be revealed. What we can tell you is that each of us managed to capture our very own leprechaun and after a lengthy discussion we each opted to take the three wishes as opposed to the gold. As none of us were from Ireland, we figured we'd have a difficult time trying unload all that gold or explain to customs where it all had come from. So we decided to attempt to barter with our leprechauns and the following is what we came up with.

 Each of you will get one and only one wish. The leprechauns that we managed to snag were all in favor of book clubs. They even confided to having one of their own. By the end of our dealings, Dawn, Sandra, Alisa and I jokingly started calling the friendly quartet the leprechauns for literacy. lol So the deal we made with the leprechauns is this, you may make one wish, but (and this is a HUGE but) you can use the word 'and' within your one wish. So think before you make your wish. Since we opted for wishes as opposed to gold, you are not permitted to wish for for money or wealth. You can go anywhere, experience anything, wish for your heart's desire, but keep in mind they aren't cupids so you can't make someone fall madly and passionately in love with you either. Sorry. Just remember for every thing you wish for you must read a book.

Levels of play: 
Modest; Read 1 - 3 books 
Practical; Read 4 - 6 books 
Wealthy; Read 7 - 9 books 
King/Queeen of the Castle; Read 10+ books 

You may use pictures on covers or words in titles of the things you want. You may also do a spell-it-out challenge where you pick a word and spell it out using the letters in the word and associating them with the first letter in the title (A, An, the, etc can be skipped and you may use the next letter in the title), the first letter in an authors first or last name, or you may use the first letter of a character's first, last, or nick name to do the spell-it-out portion.

Example of a spell-it-out challenge:
R - Remy Chandler, a character in A Kiss Before the Apocalypse by Thomas E. Sniegoski
I - Inconceivable by Shannon Woodward
N - Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh
G - Eon: Dragoneye Reborn by Alison Goodman

Example of a wish challenge with covers and titles:
Weekend in Paris My Demon Lover Princess of the Midnight Ball (Princess #1) Mine Till Midnight (The Hathaways, #1) How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf (Naked Werewolf, #1) Dance with a Vampire (Vampire Kisses, #4) Last Kiss Goodnight (Otherworld Assassin, #1) Dangerous in Diamonds (The Rarest Blooms, #4) Happily Ever After

I wish to spend a Weekend in Paris with My Demon Lover and be Princess of the Midnight Ballwhile wearing Mine Till Midnight (The Hathaways, #1) and I'll learn How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf after ditching my Demon Lover to Dance with a Vampire who will give me a Last Kiss Goodnight while I look Dangerous in Diamonds and afterwards live Happily Ever After.

: No leprechauns were hurt in the making of this challenge.

PPS: The moderators of Who's Your Author? are in no way liable or responsible if said leprechauns default on said wishes.

 PPPS: If we actually had to state the above and you truly believed our little tale, then we truly are little worried about you.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Early Review of Lord of Darkness (Maiden Lane, #5) by Elizabeth Hoyt

  • Title: Lord of Darkness (Maiden Lane)
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Historical Romance
  • Format: Paperback, 384 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (February 26, 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 1455508306
  • ISBN-13: 978-1455508303
  • Author's Website:
  • Notes:  Quotes will need to be checked against the final copy as I read the ARC.           

Two years ago circumstances forced Lady Margaret 'Megs' to marry. Her fiance and lover had died leaving her with child. She believed her husband, Godric, had volunteered to keep her from being ruined. During her wedding breakfast, mere hours after saying 'I do' she miscarried and soon after retired to her new husband's country estate to recuperate. Her husband never came to visit nor ask her to visit him. Two years had gone by and the marriage had still never been consummated. At first Megs grieved for the child and fiance who were both lost to her. Now she longs for another child and has decided to go after what she wants and seduce her husband. Godric St. John's world is about to be upturned.

Three years ago Godric St. John lost his wife, Clara, after she suffered for 9 years from a fatal disease. He loved her dearly and vowed he'd stay true to her memory and never bedded another woman thereafter. Two years ago he was blackmailed into marrying Megs when her brother threatened to expose to all that Godric was the elusive Ghost of St. Giles. He was fairly set in his ways and was content to lead a separate life from his current wife. He had no intention of ever starting anything with her. He was the Ghost of St. Giles, "protector of the weak, a predator to be feared." He saved people. What he didn't realize, was that someone needed to save him.

This is the fifth book of the Maiden Lane series. If you haven't read the previous books, you will probably feel like you missed something and you'd be right. Some of what happened in this book is based off of what has happened in some of the previous books. I recommend reading the series in its entirety.

This was such a fun and delightful read. From the very first chapter we get a hint of a spark between Megs and Godric. I found it rather charming. Upon their first meeting in two years,"suddenly something inside of him (Godric)--something he'd thought dead for years--woke." Likewise, "she'd never expected, when she (Megs) finally met him, to feel So Alive." Granted at this point Megs didn't realize the Ghost of St. Giles was her husband, but I loved it.

Megs was not a natural born seductress and that endeared her to me. I loved her determination, spunk, and uncertainty as to how to get what she wanted. I loved how each understood what the other was going through as they tried to put the loves of their past to rest. Love doesn't die when a person does. It tends to linger and keeps you within it's grasp sometimes long after their gone.

I absolutely loved Godric although at times he could have used a figurative smack to the head. I loved how he'd been true to his first wife and was very passionate in nature. I loved how at times Megs maddened him, and at other times, drove him crazy. He was sweet, kind, and at times rather jealous. It was fun seeing him come to the conclusion he wouldn't be betraying his first wife's memory by actually living and loving Megs.

Ms. Hoyt masterfully integrated The Legend of the Hellequin into the book, which I'm pretty sure she made up as I could find no reference to it when I tried to google it. The Hellequin, however, is a character occasionally used  in French passion plays that is easily identified and is described as being a black-faced emissary of the devil and is said to have roamed the countryside with a group of demons chasing the damned souls of evil people to Hell. Ms. Hoyt craftily used this creature to emphasize the inner struggle going on inside of Godric. Megs manages to drag him out of a state of limbo between the dead and the living where he doesn't seem to quite fit in to either. I additionally liked her use of the apple tree to symbolize Godric. Everyone thought him as good as dead just like the tree.

Why is the name of the book Lord of Darkness? Well, I believe it has to do with both the Hellequin representation of Godric and the fact that Godric was the Ghost of St. Giles. As the Ghost, he tended to stay in the dark.

Overall, I gave this one 5 out of 5 roses. I absolutely adored Megs and Godric. The two just made sense. It was fun seeing Godric get unreasonably and insanely jealous and watching Megs put him in his place. I loved how each actually listened to what the other was saying and for once a couple actually communicated. Yay! I loved how each came to the realization of their feelings for the other gradually through the book and how Godric made such a grand gesture to his Lady love. It was very touching even if it was a crazy thing to do at the time. The book left me with a good feeling and a wish to read the next. There is a hint of what is to come, and I can't wait, but I fear I have to.

Now, I have to say the cover left me chuckling. In the book Megs initially thinks her husband looks rather old, but after looking at the guy in the cover, I'm wondering if she might need glasses? Perhaps it was the wig he supposedly wore? I don't know, but I found it rather funny.

On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one scores 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 A wonderful blend of drama, healing, romance and, well, love. I HIGHLY recommend this one. I truly adore the series.

Oh, one last thing, I needed to share this lovely stepback. Isn't it gorgeous? *sigh*

Order of the series:

Early Review of Immortal Ever After (Argeneau #18) by Lynsay Sands

  • Title: Immortal Ever After: An Argeneau Novel
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Paranormal Romance
  • Format: Paperback, 384 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (February 26, 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 0062078119
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062078117
  • Author's Website:

Kidnapped with her life and the lives of six other woman in jeopardy, she waited for her chance. When it was finally her turn she pretended to be drugged, which she would have been, if she had eaten the food. She searched for a weapon or some means of escape as he dragged her through the house, and when the opportunity presented itself, she took it. She ironically staked the large man she and the other captives referred to as Igor. He wasn't her only concern, however. She knew he was just preparing her for his master's sick amusement. For the man who thought himself a vampire and kept 7 woman at a time, one for each day of the week, locked in cages. As she was on the phone with 911 she heard the telltale sound of the garage door opening. She'd have to rescue herself and hope the police got there in time to save the others. Before she could go very far, however, she passed out from loss of blood from a wound inflicted on her during her fight for freedom. 

Now in the protective custody of Immortal Council's Enforcers, she'll be put to the test. For Valerie is special in more ways and than one. She's Anders' life mate. Will she be able to love the very type of man who held her hostage? Will she be able to discern the difference between the rogue immortal that attacked her and the one who, if she says yes, could be her life mate? Or will the horror that vampires really do exist be too much? And with her captor still on the loose is she truly safe? Anders will have his work cut out for him to convince Valerie he's worth it and keep her safe.   

This is the eighteenth book in the Argeneau series. While most would probably consider the beings Ms. Sands has created vampires, she's added a scientific twist by letting bio-engineered nanos be the explanation behind her immortals' need for blood and their longevity. Created by the physicians of Atlantis just prior to its sinking, the scientifically advanced civilization had created the nanos. By introducing them into a person's blood stream, the nanos both repair and enhance the human body. They also need more blood than one human being alone can create, hence immortals require additional blood. I have to admit I love the whole concept of nanos as being the basis for the immortality of Lynsay Sands' vampire like beings. Since the Argeneau series began, nanos have been popping up right and left within many books. I guess I'm not the only fan.

In Immortal Ever After, Valerie Moyer is a vet who's decided to take some time off from her practice to brush up her veterinarian skills and mend her wounded heart. Before she could even start her classes, however, she was snatched off the street and kidnapped. From a kidnapper's perspective, she was the perfect victim with no family or friends in the area to notice her disappearance. She, however, was made of sterner stuff and she fought back. I liked how even though Valerie was in a bad situation she managed to keep her head and escape.  

Anders was a fun character. I liked how he was so unsure about Valerie, and who could blame him? Just because you know someone is your life mate doesn't mean they'll actually want to be yours. There are any number of reasons or situations which could contribute to them not accepting you as a potential mate. They could be in another fully committed relationship when you find them, they could think you're a totally nut job when you try to explain what you are, or they could be totally traumatized by some rogue vampire who kidnapped and terrorized them. Lucky Anders, well, not really. Anders will need to take things nice and slow if he wants any hope of gaining her trust and love.  

Overall, I gave this one 4 out of 5 roses. It was a nice combination of romance and suspense. I enjoyed the mystery of who the rogue was and the suspense created by not knowing if he would still prove to be a danger to Valerie. I enjoyed learning more about Anders and his background. I loved Valerie and the fact she rescued herself. I also liked how she took the news that vampires, er, immortals truly do exist. Additionally, I loved how we were able to see how some of the other characters from previous books were doing. I confess, I fell a little more in love with Lucian, whose house Valerie stays at, and his attitude that what his woman wants his woman gets. lol A very fun and enjoyable read. 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.

Order of Series according to Lynsay Sands:

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Early Review of The Chieftain (Return of the Highlanders, #4) by Margaret Mallory

  • Title: The Chieftain (The Return of the Highlanders)
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Historical Romance
  • Format: Paperback, 448 pages
  • Publisher: Forever (February 26, 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 0446583111
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446583114
  • Author's Website:
  • Notes: Quotes will need to be checked against the final copy as I read the ARC.

Twenty years ago his mother cursed his father after she found he had born a child with another woman...

"Mo Mhallachd ort! (My curse on you!) May your seed dry up, Donald Gallach, chieftain of the MacDonalds of Sleat, so that no woman shall bear you another child. May your sons already born by other woman die young. Three times 'round, and the spell is bound."

That was the day his life was changed. For magic has its price and his mother's own life was taken shortly thereafter. Some would say as payment. When his mother's body was found after she'd run away with another man, his father no longer looked at him with loving eyes. He cut him out of the line of succession for chieftain and no longer viewed him as his son but hers. As fate would have it, however, his mother's curse proved true and twenty years later he was the only one left to rule the clan.

Now Conner Gallach finds himself unprepared to step into the role of chieftain. He hasn't been trained or groomed for the role, but they needed a leader. Land has been stolen by a neighboring clan and things are in disrepair. He has his work cut out for him and among the things he must do is take a wife, but every decision, even choosing a wife, holds consequences for his clan. After what happened between his father and mother he is determined to be a true and faithful husband to his future wife and since becoming chieftain he's been celibate. He has no aspirations of making a love match.

 "The decision of who I marry is vital to the clan's future," Connor said when he grew tired of his friend's jests about his celibacy. "We must weigh the benefits and drawbacks of each possible alliance."

While marrying the daughter of another chieftain may sound like the right thing to do, sometimes  the best made match is where you least expect it. 

This is the fourth book in the Return of the Highlanders series. If you haven't read the previous books in the series, never fear. This one can be read by itself and I don't believe you'll feel lost.

Connor Gallach is an honorable man who loves his clan. As a child his life was upturned by what happened between his parents and as we all know, the events in our pasts can sometimes mold us and shape us into the people we become. Such is the case with Connor. He tries to do right by all and once those around him get to know him he tends to gain their loyalty. As he steps into his role, however, many judge him by his father's, brother's, and uncle's past misdeeds. Being raised separate from them was probably one of the best things that could have been done for the clan. He wasn't raised to think he was better than others, that others should bow to him, or that he was entitled to more just because of his birthright. He'd happily come to a friend's aid and put his life at risk.

Ilysa is the sister of Connor's best friend. She's secretly had a crush with Connor for years. She realizes when he takes over the clan that he needs some assistance and she quietly oversees the domestic tasks of the castle. She makes sure the staff does their job, creates menus and makes sure meals are served in timely fashion, and basically does all the tasks the Lady of the castle would do to ensure things run smoothly. Additionally, she's a healer and can tend to wounds and can occasionally foresee the future. While she does a lot, she's been raised to blend into the background. She dresses demurely to the point of wearing neutral colors and covering her hair. Connor hardly notices her until the day she locks him in his own dungeon. He becomes infuriated, as you can imagine, with her and tells her to leave which she promptly does. But Ilysa had a good reason for locking him up. She foresaw his death. And someone, possibly more than one, is trying to kill him. For someone is not happy with him being the chieftain. 

In some ways the book reminds me of Taylor Swift's song, You Belong With Me. Some of the lyrics just seem to fit the story perfectly,

'Can't you see that I'm the one who understands you?
Been here all along, so why can't you see?
You belong with me

Standing by and waiting at your back door
All this time, how could you not know?
Baby, you belong with me, you belong with me

You belong with me
Have you ever thought just maybe
You belong with me?
You belong with me'

Overall, I gave this one 5 out of 5 roses. I absolutely adored the story and loved the characters. A nice blend of suspense, romance and drama. I enjoyed watching Connor finally notice the woman who had been there all along---Ilysa. I loved drama created by someone wanting to murder Connor and his wanting to do right by his clan. I enjoyed the inner conflict he suffered at not wishing to be like his father. What he never seemed to realize was that the mere fact that he worried about it, proved he wasn't. Additionally, I absolutely loved the twist at the end which I had an inkling about, but enjoyed just the same.  On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one gets a FAN rating--the temperature in the room seems to have suddenly gone up a couple of degrees and a fan would be nice. A fabulous story that I gobbled up in one gulp. Mallory knows how to do romance right. Have I mentioned I loved it? *grin*

Order of the Series:

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Outpost (Razorland, #2) by Ann Aguirre

  • Title: Outpost
  • Classification: Young Adult (Ages 12 and up)
  • Genre: Dystopia
  • Format: Hardcover, 336 pages
  • Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (September 4, 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 0312650094
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312650094
  • Author's Website:

'I knew all the rules in the enclave. Nothing here made sense. Everything I thought was right, people told me I shouldn't even consider. Day after day, they told me I  was wrong--that I couldn't be 'me' and still be a proper girl.'

Since leaving the Enclave, Deuce and Fade have learned and seen a lot. Now safely living in the community of Salvation, Deuce feels she's lost her purpose and is having trouble adjusting to her new life. Before she'd been a respected member of the enclave and held one of the most important jobs, that of a Huntress, but those living in Salvation believe a woman's place is in more traditional roles; the most prominent being with a man raising a family. That was not how she'd been raised. Plus, things which had no worth in the Enclave, like reading and writing, are not so easily picked up by a sixteen year old who was never taught. Additionally, she doesn't have much contact with the others who she traveled with to Salvation. Fade has seemingly faded into the background barely noticing her, and Tegan hardly acknowledges her and seems to be nicely integrating into Salvation's social structure. Only Stalker regularly visits her, and he still has ideas about the two of them eventually becoming a couple. 

When Deuce finally approaches Longshot about joining the patrols, there is concern about how her appointment would be taken, and she has to earn the respect of her peers, all of whom are male. As it turns out, she is accepted in the nick of time, the Freaks or Muties, as the topsiders call them, start attacking in a much more structured manner than they ever have before. The safe and secure world of Salvation is about to be thrust into the midst of a brutal battle for survival. 

This book takes place shortly after the first book leaves off. Deuce, Fade, Tegan, and Stalker have begun to assimilate into life in Salvation. Deuce and Stalker are having the hardest time adjusting. Tegan seems to have made a smooth transition into her new life and loves helping Doc Tuttle. Fade had some education prior to ending up in the Enclave, and is adjusting quite well to school. Deuce, on the other hand, is being taught with children quite a bit younger and is mercilessly teased because of it. Stalker pretty much keeps to himself and, truth be told, I think Deuce is the only reason he is staying put. 

One of the friends Deuce has made since coming to Salvation is Longshot. He's an elder who is in charge of Salvation's security. He and his men patrol the area in and around the town. In some ways he's like a mentor to her and she tends to open up to him. Deuce has been after him to allow her on the Summer Patrols since she first found out about them, and he's finally giving her the chance, but first she has to convince his men. Women tend to have more traditional roles in Salvation, and if she makes it, she'll be the first woman ever permitted to join. 

Life in Salvation has always been thought to be a safe haven or sanctuary. Most of those who live within the city walls have never seen a Freak or witnessed one feeding on someone. They've never had to kill to survive. They've never known fear or the nightmares which developed from witnessing a horrific event. As Stalker observes, they act "Like these walls are magic, not wood, and nothing bad could ever get in." That belief is about to be shattered and those who once scoffed at or looked down upon Deuce and her foreign ways will need to rely on her and her friends to keep them safe from harm. Salvation is about to get a dose of reality.

On their journey to Salvation, the Freaks (aka Muties) seemed to be getting smarter and were bordering on being organized. Now we'll learn just how far they've come. Salvation is about to go under attack and Deuce, Stalker, and Fade, each of who are experienced fighters, may be their only hope. Things will never be the same.

Overall, I gave this one 4 out of 5 roses. Plenty of action, excitement, and zombies in this one. If you like dystopian novels and zombies, you'll probably love this series. I enjoy seeing Deuce try to survive in a world gone awry. She's smart, strong, resourceful and doesn't need rescuing because she can rescue herself. A very fun read.

Order of the series.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Heart of Darkness Blog Tour/giveaway and Top Five Reasons to Love a Bad Boy

Kendra Leigh Castle
Follow her on Twitter:!/KendraLCastle
Check out her website:

Kendra Leigh Castle was born and raised in the far and frozen reaches of Northern New York, where there was plenty of time to cultivate her love of reading thanks to the six-month-long winters. Sneaking off with selections from her mother’s vast collection of romance novels came naturally and fairly early, and a lifelong love of the Happily Ever After was born. After graduating from SUNY Oswego (where it also snowed a lot) with a teaching degree, Kendra ran off with a handsome young Navy fighter pilot and has somehow accumulated three children, three dogs, and one enormous cat during their many moves.

While stationed in a remote corner of the Nevada desert, Kendra penned her first romance, and a career often spent working in fuzzy slippers and pajamas was born. Her work has garnered both critical praise and award nominations, but the best part has been connecting with readers who share her love of dark romance (not to mention heroes with sharp, pointed teeth). Kendra currently lives in Maryland, and can usually be found curled up with her laptop and yet another cup of coffee working on her next book. She loves to hear from her readers, and can be contacted via email or her Facebook page. (Information gotten off of Kendra's website)

The Dark Dynasties Series

Dark Awakening (Dark Dynasties #1)
Enter the world of the Dark Dynasties...

For centuries, shapeshifting vampire Tynan MacGillivray has prowled the night as an outcast, valued only for his ferocious hunting skills. When a feud among the immortals escalates into all-out war, he is ordered by his ruthless queen to locate a Seer - a human woman with a special gift - who can secure victory for their clan. Ty's search leads him to a quiet New England town, but once he has the Seer in his grasp, her touch awakens within him a hunger like he's never known...

Lily Quinn has always been different. Since childhood, she's had vivid nightmares and an eerie sixth sense. When a sexy, silver-eyed stranger demands her help, Lily plunges into a new world of danger and sensuality. With Ty, she discovers sizzling passions she cannot deny and powers she cannot control. Soon, it is clear that Lily is much more than a Seer - she holds the key to ancient secrets and unthinkable destruction. But will a vampire's vow of eternal protection stop these evil forces...or unleash her dark destiny?

Midnight Reckoning (Dark Dynasties #2)
Two separate worlds ...
One passion that binds them

Wild and passionate by nature, Lyra Black is not just any werewolf. She's the future leader of the powerful pack of the Thorn - if she can stay alive long enough to inherit the title.

One of the Cait Sith bloodline of vampire cat-shifters, Jaden Harrison has no interest in the wars plaguing the world of night. But when he rescues Lyra from a violent attack, they're both captured by an insatiable desire that threatens to overwhelm them and bind them together for eternity... just as ancient enemies prepare to strike. And when they do, the Thorn and the Cait Sith - and Lyra and Jaden's love - may never recover from the deadly blow...
(Please note both descriptions were taken from the back of the respective books.)

Shadow Rising (Dark Dynasties #3)

Ancient Secrets, Dark Passions...

As one of the Grigori, a noble vampire dynasty shrouded in mystery, Ariane has spent her life hidden away in the desert. Like all of her kind, she is a watcher, fated to observe, forbidden to act. Yet when her best friend, Sammael, vanishes, she defies all rules and flees her safe haven to bring him home.

A shape-shifting assassin for the House of Shadows, Damien Tremaine is hired to locate Sammael. His hunt for the wayward Grigori leads him to Ariane, the rogue vamp who stands between him and his bounty. Damien never lets emotion interfere with his work, but a single touch from the sexy, beguiling vampire shatters his self-control. Drawn together by their common goal, what begins as an alliance of necessity soon becomes one of desire. But when the secret at the dark heart of the Grigori comes to light, Damien and Ariane must make a choice that could bind them eternally...or tear them—and everything they care about—apart.

Immortal Craving (Dark Dynasties #4)

The last-and most lethal-of his kind . . .

Wild, uncontrollable, and powerful, the lion-shifting Rakshasa were hunted down by vicious rival vampires who feared their dark, magical abilities. Somehow one survived, and now, after centuries of hiding, Tasmin Singh reemerges as fierce and fearless as ever at the door of the Lilim queen, seeking answers . . . and sanctuary.

The human best friend to a vampire queen, Bay Harper traded her quiet, comfortable life for a world filled with immortal assassins, warring werewolves . . . and this hauntingly sexy shifter. Only Bay's gentle touch can subdue Tasmin's inner demons, even as he brings out a passion and sensuality she never imagined she could feel. But when a bloody struggle threatens to tear them apart, can Bay risk everything on her faith in him-or will his dark side be stronger than even their all-consuming desire?

Cynthia Garner
Follow her on Twitter: @CynthiaGarner
Check out her website:

Cynthia Garner discovered her love for making up stories when her sixth grade teacher told the class to write a story that began “It was a dark and stormy night…” With that Cynthia's love for all things paranormal was born. When she's not working her day job as a mostly mild-mannered human resources manager, she's on her laptop writing or playing way too much Solitaire. Originally from Northeast Ohio, Cynthia now lives in the desert Southwest. (Information obtained from the back of her current book 'Kiss of the Vampire') For your information, Cynthia also writes erotic romances under the pen name Sherrill Quinn.

The Warriors of the Rift Series

Kiss of the Vampire
(Warriors of the Rift #1)

Once a generation, the rift between the paranormal world and the human world opens, allowing supernatural entities to cross. Vampire, demon, or shapeshifter, they can save the world-or send it spiraling into chaos. 

Half-demon, half-human, Nix de la Fuente is accepted by neither and mistrusted by both. Determined to prove she's more human than not, she devotes herself to solving crimes between the world's mortals and its most unsavory undead. But her latest case brings her face to face with the one vampire she could never resist . . .

Called in to investigate a string of violent murders, special agent Tobias Caine isn't interested in rekindling his relationship with Nix. Yet one look and the vampire knows his need for her is as strong as ever. Once, their all-consuming passion nearly cost Nix her fragile hold on her humanity. Now, as their hunger for one another intensifies, exposing them to an unimaginable danger, it could cost them both their lives.

           Secret of the Wolf
     (Warriors of the Rift #2)

Once a generation, the rift between the paranormal world and the human world opens, allowing supernatural entities to cross. Vampire, demon, or shapeshifter, they can save the world-or send it spiraling into chaos.

As a werewolf liaison to the Council of Preternaturals, Tori Joseph is used to straddling the world between humans and immortals. She plays by the rules and always delivers justice, no matter the cost. But after a string of increasingly brutal attacks results in humans turning into werewolves, Tori doesn't reveal her horrifying suspicion: Someone very close to her might be responsible.

Investigating the paranormal violence, no-nonsense detective Dante MacMillan believes Tori is hiding something. His search for the truth draws him into greater danger as he gets closer to the dark realm of the immortals-and to the sexy werewolf who stirs his primal lust. Now with evil closing in around them, Dante must convince Tori to trust him . . . before her deadly secret destroys them both.

       Heart of the Demon 
    (Warriors of the Rift #3)

Once a generation, the rift between the paranormal world and the human world opens, allowing supernatural entities to cross. Vampire, demon, or shapeshifter, they can save the world—or send it spiraling into chaos.

The next opening of the rift is coming—and its consequences will be deadly. A rogue group of human-hating preternaturals is planning an apocalyptic attack, but the Council of Preternaturals may have found the key to saving the world: Keira O'Brien, a fey with a long criminal record, whose empathic abilities once made her the queen of con artists. If she successfully infiltrates the dangerous faction, the sins of her past will be forgiven.

Keira isn't the only agent working against the rogue prets. Finn Evnissyen, a powerful demon with a dark lineage, is a hired assassin looking for a way out. If he stops the threat, he will finally earn his freedom. As the rift fast approaches, and danger escalates, Finn and Keira must discover if they're on the same side—or sleeping with the enemy . .



1. Leather pants. Even if he doesn’t wear them, you know he could…and that they would look amazing on him.

2. His brooding is more sultry than annoying.

3. He always gets what he wants, come hell or high water—and what he wants is you.

4. Not everyone gets a tender lover, devoted mate, and complete badass all in one delicious package. It’s heady stuff.

5. It’ll take quite a woman to redeem him. But if you’re up to the task, the rewards far outweigh the risks.

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What is it about bad boys that draw women so much? Why aren’t some of us satisfied with the guy who has a good job, is caring, gentle and is just an all around nice guy?

Let’s see if we can break it down to the top five reasons bad boys are so attractive to the female gender:

1. Bad boys are confident. Not just around women, but in everything they do. They eat their eggs and bacon with confidence. They walk with confidence—a swagger, if you will. They know what they want and exactly how to get it, and that is a big turn-on to something a little primitive in all of us.

2. Bad boys don’t give a damn. About anything. They chat you up and you act like you’re not interested? Fine. They move on to the next woman. They’re not looking for a serious relationship, and if you’re a woman who’s been hurt by love, or just not ready to commit to anything serious, that’s mighty attractive.

3. Bad boys are ultra masculine. They are strong and dominant. As much as women want and deserve to be paid the same as a man performing the same job, and have the opportunity to do the same jobs as men, we still want a mate who, if the zombie apocalypse happens, can help protect and provide for us.

4. Bad boys are exciting, mysterious and maybe even a little dangerous. Most of us have lives that are fairly ordinary—we go to work, we run errands, we go home. Lather, rinse & repeat the next day. A bad boy will keep you guessing. He lives his life on the edge and he’s a rebel. He spices things up in what might otherwise be a boring life.

5. Bad boys present a challenge. Most women don’t like men who are pushovers. If I may be a little frank, I don’t want to feel like I have bigger balls than the man I’m with. And there’s the challenge—the give and take, the push and pull in a relationship. I don’t want to always win an argument just because he gives up or won’t voice an opinion in the first place.

What do you think? What other traits would you add to this list?


I'm giving away to ONE winners one copy of Heart of the Demon by Cynthia Garner -AND- one copy of Immortal Craving by Kendra Leigh Castle.

Rules for eligibility:

Only residents of the US who are 18 or older are eligible.

Please leave either your email address 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. (required)

Winner will be randomly chosen. Giveaway ends February 21st, midnight eastern time. Only one winner per person and per address. 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!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Heart of the Demon (Warriors of the Rift, #3) by Cynthia Garner

  • Title: Heart of the Demon (Warriors of the Rift)
  • Classification: Adult Fiction
  • Genre: Urban Fantasy
  • Format: Paperback, 368 pages
  • Publisher: Forever (February 26, 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 0446585130
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446585132
  • Author's Website:

 Countdown--Four Months

"We want you to infiltrate a rogue group that's planning something big at the next Influx."

Every 73 years the Moore-Creasy-Devon Comet creates a dimensional Rift as it makes its way across the solar system. When that happens supernatural being ascend upon the earth hijacking human bodies thereby taking control and suppressing the human being that once possessed it. Referred to as the Influx, it has been happening for years and no one can predict who the preternatural body snatchers (aka EDs - Extra Dimensionals) will take over until the full possession takes place. Some of the EDs are political exiles, some have left for religious reasons, but the majority were banned from their world for being criminals of the worst kind. Many see this as their second chance and attempt to reform and meld into society while others don't wish to give up their bad habits. It's the latter that the Council of Preternaturals hope to stop.

Recently, however, it has come to the attention of the Council that a group of rogue preternaturals is building a device that could potentially open the rift on its own or prolong the opening of the coming rift allowing more EDs to pass through.  They've asked Finn Evnissye to infiltrate the group and prevent that from happening. Being as he's Lucifer's enforcer and he's made his dissatisfaction with his job known, he should have an easy time infiltrating the group.

Keira O'Brien has also been asked to investigate the rogue group. She's on a secret mission for Caladh MacLoch who was a senior member of the Council of Preternaturals. He fears someone in the council is leaking information to the rogue group. No one but Caladh will know of her mission. If her cover is blown she'll be left to her own devices to get herself out of trouble.

Both have been warned to tell no one of their mission.
 Both will think the other is involved. 
Will a little thing like love get in the way?


This is the third book of the Warriors of the Rift series. I would recommend reading the previous books in the series first or you'll miss all the links to the previous characters in the series. I was pleasantly surprised that all the previous couples popped in and made an appearance in this book. It's fun knowing how characters fair after their stories have been told.

I have to say I love a redeemable bad boy and Finn fits the bill. He is the ultimate bad boy or so his image projects. He's Lucifer's (yes, that Lucifer) son and his enforcer. He knows how to fight and he inherited some mad skills from his mother. He's part chameleon and can fully or partially shift into any preternatural being, yet maintains his own individuality. In other words, I don't believe he can change his appearance to look like another individual. He can just take on any or all of the traits of a human or supernatural being. Just imagine being able to use the senses or powers of any preternatural being you can imagine. That would be pretty awesome.

Said to be the essence of femininity--soft and seemingly delicate with red hair and a sultry smile, Keira was a grifter in another life and dimension. Scamming individuals out of things came naturally to her. By using slight of hand, charm, wit and her ability to read and manipulate the thoughts and emotions of others she could get just about anything she liked. The latter talent being part of the skill set she inherited with her fey heritage. She was sent through the rift over three thousand years ago in 1419 BC and is set on reforming her ways. She keeps telling herself she's going undercover for the good of others, but secretly fears she'll pick up her her old trade and run with it. She's not proud of what she's done, but given the time periods she's lived in there weren't many ways for a single young woman to make a living. There is no denying how addictive or easily running a con comes to her. She just hopes once her task is complete she can quit cold turkey.

The romance between these two was hot and undeniable. While they may seem to have little in common, both seem to want similar things even if they can't see it at the beginning of the story. I loved the fact each was torn between revealing their true reasons for infiltrating the rogue group and not wanting to blow their cover. I liked how both Keira and Finn approached the relationship with caution and tried to downplay their feelings.

Additionally, I loved how we found out a little more about how the preternatural take over a host. We still haven't gotten the full picture, but I look forward to finding out more about it. I keep wondering isn't there some way for a person to avoid getting possessed and could a victim potentially overtake their body snatcher?  Are their any humans who are immune from possession? Does the host actually die at possession or are they just silent co-inhibitors of their bodies? Additionally, I liked the question posed about whether it could be possible, if the right technology could be created, for people/preternaturals to cross through to the other dimension from earth? That would be interesting

Overall, I gave this one 4 out of 5 roses. It had a fast pace with a nice blend of romance, action and suspense. I loved both Finn and Keira and how they kept being thrown together. I liked Keira's snarky nature and  seeing her and Finn use their unique skills. I also enjoyed the twist at the end that I didn't see coming. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one gets 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 the Series:
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