Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays!

Happy holidays to all, whatever you celebrate! I hope you all have lots of books in your stocking and under your tree.

I haven't been doing many romance reviews because I've been reading a couple of fantasy series. It's surprising how close the line is between fantasy and paranormal with some books. I will get back to the romances soon.

I'm debating whether to include ebook reviews on here. I have to think about that.

Enjoy and stay safe!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Hunting the Hunter by Shiloh Walker

This is a very interesting vampire book which is part of a series. I didn't realize that until I had finished it and looked the author up on Amazon to see what else she had written, so obviously you don't have to read them in order. It is in a similar vein to the J.R. Ward books and the Keri Arthur books, but with some differences. There's more of an emphasis on the relationship between the hero and heroine in this story, and less on secondary characters and worldbuilding.

I've been trying to figure out why I liked this book so much and all I can come up with is the author's voice and her style of writing is masterful. Although the plot is not very original (hunting down a rogue vampire,) it's done with more depth and more insights into the villian than is usual. The characters are not particularly original either (the vampire Hunter who protects the world and the human who loves her) but I came to know them and empathize with them. There is a lot of action and the book moves quickly, but it is the writing that makes this book stand out.

I'll rate this book a 7.5 out of 10 and am looking forward to reading more books by Shiloh Walker.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Possessed by the Highlander by Terri Brisbin

If you're in the mood for a Scottish historical, Possessed by the Highlander is an excellent choice. The story is a variation of the forced marriage plot, but it is much more than that implies.

The strength of this book is in the characters and their growth. The plot is minimal, with little action other than in the beginning and end of the book, but it kept me mesmerized. The hero and heroine felt very real and I was really rooting for them. I liked that the hero was known as the Peacemaker and was not the usual warrior Highlander. I really liked the ending which I felt was quite unusual and very satisfying. The story made me tear up three or four times, which is an indication of how good the writing is.

I would recommend this book to anyone looking for an insightful Scottish medieval romance, and I'll rate it 7.5 out of 10.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Moving Target by Cheyenne McCray

I'm a fan of McCray's paranormal Magic series, but this is the first of her romantic suspense books that I've read. It is a straight romantic suspense, no paranormal elements, but if you're in the mood for a fast paced book with a lot of action and steamy sex, this fits the bill.

The suspense never let up and there was a nicely done sense of imminent danger throughout the book. This is the book's strongest point. The characters were interesting, but I had trouble empathizing with them. This is surprising, since the characters in the Magic series are so well done. I also wondered why the author let the cat out of the bag about the heroine's sister being alive at the beginning of the book, but maybe it was to keep us wondering when Ani would find out. I also was disappointed that Ani's sister, Jennifer, did not exactly have a happy ending.

I will look for McCray's other romantic suspense books, but my favorites are her paranormals. I'll rate Moving Target a 7.0 out of 10.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Guarded Heart by Jennifer Blake

Guarded Heart is part of Blake's Masters at Arms series. This book was a bit different than most of the books I read. It had a slower pace, entirely in keeping with the 1844 New Orleans setting, and had a very strong sense of atmosphere. This author obviously knows her history and her area, not surprising since she is a 7th generation Louisianian.

I very much enjoyed travelling back in time with Jennifer Blake and I thought the plot was interesting and original. It's not often that we see a heroine with the determination that Ariadne has. Gavin, the sword master, is just what you'd want in a hero and he seems very human, not too perfect like some. The action scene at the end of the book did strain credulity but kept me turning the pages as fast as I could to see what would happen.

This was quite a change from the fast paced, sometimes verging on frenetic, dark paranormals I read, or the light and witty English historicals. It gave me time to savor the small details and enjoy learning all the secrets of this well-matched couple. I'll rate it a 7.5 out of 10 and I'll be looking for more of her books set in New Orleans.

Monday, December 1, 2008

All I Want For Christmas is a Vampire by Kerrelyn Sparks

All I Want For Christmas is a Vampire is a fun read. It is "Vampires Lite," in the same vein (LOL) as the Lynsay Sands vampire books. This is the 5th in the series but you could probably catch on without a problem if you haven't read the previous books. It was nice to see some of the characters from other books, though, especially the intriguing half-vampire toddler Constantine.

I liked the hero, Ian MacPhie, very much. Of course what's not to like about a gorgeous Scottish vampire looking for his soul mate? He thinks she will be a vampire--ha. Toni, the heroine, is great but I do wish she had gotten to kick ass more. She is hired as a guard and is supposedly a very good fighter but we don't get to see that. I did like how brave she was, how loyal she was and how she seemed real.

There is just enough angst and action in the book to keep things interesting, but the emphasis is definitely on the romance and the humor. I'd rate this book 7.5 out of 10.