Surrender the Dark (The Dark: Book 1) by Tibby Armstrong


Surrender the Dark (The Dark, #1)

Title: Surrender the Dark

Author: Tibby Armstrong

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept

Date of publication: May 23rd, 2017

Genre: Romance, LGBQTIA

Number of pages: 251

POV: 3rd person

Series: The Dark

Surrender the Dark – Book 1

Taste the Dark – Book 2 (expected publication date: December 12th, 2017)

Claim the Dark – Book 3 (expected publication date: May 8th, 2018)

Where you can find Surrender the Dark: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

As a provocative series of paranormal temptation begins, a vampire king seduces the supernaturally gifted man hunting him. But when the stakes are literally life or death, their struggle for control is no game.

Benjamin Fuller is a hunter, born and bred. Blinded as a child by the vampire who slaughtered his family, he’s blessed with a second sight that allows him to catch and kill his quarry. What his gift can’t help him see coming is his fierce, almost carnal attraction to the mystery man who claims to be a fellow hunter and whose touch triggers both lust and revulsion. When he gains the upper hand, Benjamin vows to bring his enemy to his knees.

After many years spent in exile, the only one who can help restore Tzadkiel Dragoumanos to his rightful place as War King is a blind hunter with golden curls, a lithe dancer’s physique, and distinctive facial scars—scars Tzadkiel gave him two decades ago. The mere scent of Benjamin Fuller provokes an unwelcome rush of insatiable desire. Yet to win an all-out supernatural war, Tzadkiel must resist the ravenous hunger to possess his prey—for now.

My review:

Hunter born, hunter bred

Kill the vampires or you’ll be dead

I really didn’t know what I was getting into by reading Surrender the Dark. I knew, from the blurb, that the book was going to be dark but I really wasn’t expecting how dark it got during the book. Not that I minded because that darkness made the book so good to read. Also, take a look at the cover. Normally I don’t comment on the cover of books but I had to on this one. It fits the book perfectly. The half-naked man standing, with his back to the reader, his arms out at his side and looking up at whatever is beyond the cover. Love it!!

Benjamin was a very interesting character to read. The book actually starts off with a prologue when he was 8 years old and taking “lessons” from his uncle. What lessons is he taking? How to kill vampires and these are lessons that Benjamin do not enjoy. On that particular day, his Uncle decided it was the time that Benjamin made his first kill and left him in the dungeon with an incapacitated vampire. Which was a mistake, of sorts, because Benjamin, in a moment of sympathy for the vampire, decided to give him some water and that set off a series of events that ended with his parents and uncle getting killed, Benjamin losing his eyes and the vampire escaping. So to say that he has some issues is a huge understatement.

Fast forward 20 years and Benjamin is avenging his parents and uncle’s murders by taking out vampires one by one with the help of his friends: Nyx: a half faery, half witch and in hiding from her parents, The Morgan who is the powerful head of the coven and Lady Morgana, who is the queen of the fae, and Akito: a regular human who Benjamin met while in the psych ward and who wanted to be a superhero. While Benjamin is blind (acid in the eyes can do that to you), he can see auras. Which does come in handy while fighting vampires.

Tzadkiel is the vampire who Benjamin’s parents and uncle had in their basement all those years ago. After murdering Benjamin’s parents, Tzadkiel goes into what I can only describe as hibernation mode for 20 years. The last thing that he thinks about is Benjamin and has a thirst for revenge. He finds Benjamin in a bar, drinking away the memories of his family and the vampires that he killed. His thought of revenge is put on the back burner when a greater threat is revealed that threatens every single supernatural being in Boston.

The world building and character building were fantastic. I love it when an author is able to suck me into a story right from the get go and when I finish the book, leave me wanting for more. The fact that this book is set in Boston cemented the deal for me. I grew up around Boston and it thrills me to no end when an author makes an effort to actually get the geography and the feel of a city right off the bat and this book did that. And the character building….oh my god. Each character, even the secondary ones, had layers to them and it was wonderful to see Tzadkiel and Benjamin’s layers pulled back and their true selves revealed.

Now the all important sex scenes. The author let the sexual tension build in the book until the characters couldn’t take it anymore and then the fireworks happened. What I loved is that Tzadkiel and Benjamin had sex only a few times in the book and so much was conveyed with a look and a touch. The sex was off the pages hot. I had to fan myself after the first scene because it was so steamy. But what got me even more into it was that the feelings that both characters started having for each other. I think I fell in love with Tzadkiel before Benjamin did.

The end of the book was a bit of a surprise. I felt awful for Akito and actually can’t wait to read his story. The HEA with Tzadkiel and Benjamin was fantastic.

How many stars will I give Surrender the Dark: 4

Why: Great world and character building, great subplots and a romance that took my breath away.

Will I reread: Yes

Will I recommend to family and friends: Yes

Age range: Adult

Why: Language, violence, and sex. There is a pretty horrific scene where Benjamin loses his eyes.

**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

Devil’s Own (The Devil’s Keepers: Book 3) by Megan Crane


Devil's Own (The Devil's Keepers #3)

Title: Devil’s Own

Author: Megan Crane

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept

Date of publication: May 16th, 2017

Genre: Romance

Number of pages: 202

POV: 3rd person

Series: The Devil’s Keeper

Devil’s Honor – Book 1 (review here)

Devil’s Mark – Book 2

Devil’s Own – Book 3

Where you can find Devil’s Own: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

From the bestselling author of Devil’s Honor and Devil’s Mark, this seductive novel of the Louisiana bayou kicks into high gear as a dangerously sexy biker takes a no-nonsense teacher on the ultimate thrill ride.

Lara Ashburn hates bikers. She watched a motorcycle club destroy her hometown, bringing her brother down with it. That’s a life she put far in her rearview. So the last person she wants to see walking into her classroom is the top enforcer of the Devil’s Keepers. Big, mean, and gorgeous, all tattoos and leather, Chaser is everything Lara should avoid. Yet the insane chemistry sparking between them tempts her to break all the rules.

Ryan “Chaser” Frey has his hands full with a teen daughter in need of tough love, and he doesn’t have time for prissy teachers who want to tell him how to raise his kid. But Chaser never could resist a chick who gives as good as she gets. Lara is sexy as hell, and she’s not afraid of him. Plus, her links to a California club could provide the Devils with leverage against their enemies. But that would mean mixing business with pleasure—and risking the one woman Chaser can’t afford to lose.

My review:

I am going to come across as a prude here but sometimes there are sex scenes that really make me uncomfortable. I have read and been reviewing romance novels for a long time (since 2011 on another blog and 2014 on this one), so I like to think that I have a good feel for these types of book. Plus, I really like MC romances. Something about a guy, a girl and the danger of the club gets me. Unfortunately for Devil’s Own, I couldn’t get it. To be honest, the book makes me feel slightly dirty, and not in a good way, while reading it.

Let’s start with what I liked about the book:

The plotline and the subplot line: I actually was really intrigued by all 3 plotlines and I do wish that more info was given about Lara’s uncle and his club (but I have a feeling that they will be factored more in other books).  Kaylee’s storyline broke my heart. That poor girl had been through the wringer and back with her mom. Plus add in that her dad was an enforcer for the club and she was basically on her own because her aunt Liz could care less, I felt awful for her. She was screaming for attention and fortunately, for her, Lara cared enough to try to help. The last storyline, which started in Devil’s Mark, looks like it is going to come to a head in another couple of books.

Chaser: I love a man that exudes dangerousness and Chaser definitely did that. I thought Lara was brave for speaking to him the way she did during their parent/teacher meeting but then again, remembering how that meeting ended…I’m not too sure about that. Put it this way, I wouldn’t want to meet him in a dark alley.

Kaylee: She didn’t show up much in the book but I loved the scenes she were in. She was definitely trying her father with her choice of clothing, her decisions to drink before going to school and just being a pain in the butt. But there was a reason behind her acting out and when it was revealed, it was devastating. I felt so bad for her when she revealed it to Lara and I wanted to give her a huge hug.

Now, onto what I didn’t like about this book:

Sex within the first chapter of the book: Ok, I am not a prude, far from it. But to have the two main characters have sex within the first couple of chapters of the book just doesn’t do it for me. Especially when they don’t know each other and the sex is in Lara’s classroom. Just didn’t do it for me. Also what didn’t do it for me was the fact that, with the exception of one night, Lara and Chaser only had sex in public places. Let’s see: the clubhouse, on the stairs to her apartment and one memorable scene where they had sex at the clubhouse while watching an orgy. Made me feel kind of dirty reading it.

Lara: She couldn’t make up her mind if she wanted to be a biker babe or an uptight teacher and there was literally no middle ground with her. She drove me nuts seesawing back and forth between the two stereotypes. Heck, even I knew, pretty early in the book, which was she was going to go. Honestly, it shouldn’t have been dragged out the way it was but I can appreciate why it was done.

The end of the book was pretty predictable and I was able to call certain events pretty early in the book.

How many stars will I give Devil’s Own: 2.5 (rounded up to 3 for Amazon and Goodreads)

Why: Like I said above, this book made me feel dirty. As much as I liked Chaser, I really couldn’t see him and Lara being a couple. Lara drove me nuts with her seesawing back and forth (like I said above).

Will I reread: Maybe

Will I recommend to family and friends: Maybe

Age range: Adult

Why: Sex, language, and violence

**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

Royal Affair (Royals in Exile: Book 2) by Marquita Valentine


Royal Affair (Royals in Exile, #2)

Title: Royal Affair

Author: Marquita Valentine

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept

Date of publication: April 18th, 2017

Genre: Romance

Number of pages: 230

POV: Alternating 1st person

Series: Royals in Exile

Royal Scandal – Book 1 (review here)

Royal Affair – Book 2

Royal Chase – Book 3

Royal Duty – Book 4 (expected publication date: September 26th, 2017)

Where you can find Royal Affair: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

A sheltered princess goes wild—and makes the best mistake of her life—when she falls for a roguish reporter in this fun, sexy romance from the bestselling author of Royal Scandal.

Online muckraker Brooks Walker has a reputation for exposing the political élite. Now he’s set his sights on the Sinclair siblings, who’ve been embroiled in their fair share of drama ever since their exile to North Carolina. But Brooks has never been afraid to get his hands dirty—until he meets a royal wallflower at a charity ball who makes him reconsider everything. Is Brooks feeling guilty because he knows all the sordid details of her family’s history? Or because he’s putting their relationship first, before his journalistic integrity?

As the “spare” twin, Princess Charlotte has always been the responsible one. So when her sister finally agrees to fulfill her duty as queen, Charlotte gives herself permission to break a few rules by flirting with the very off-limits CEO of Walker Media. Brooks is the worst sort of man to start an affair with, but Charlotte just can’t help it. The trouble is since she’s no good at playing games, soon she’s tiara over heels in love. And when Brooks comes clean, Charlotte must decide whether his confession is worth a royal pardon.

My review:

Have you ever wanted to read a book where the villain got his happily ever after and he got it with one of the fairytale characters? Well, read Royal Affair because that is exactly what happens here. Starting off hot and steamy and ending with a very surprising happily ever after, Royal Affair made me run the gauntlet of emotions while reading it. I went from being insanely happy to almost depressed within the same chapter. Now, normally that would throw me off a book, but in this case, it made me like it more.

Royal Affair is also one of those books that eclipse the first book in the series. Now, don’t get me wrong, I loved it when I read Della and Colin’s romance. It was just that it was missing something and I couldn’t put my finger on it. Then I read Royal Affair and went, “Ahhhh, that’s what’s missing.” What was missing was genuine feelings that developed between Brooks and Charlotte. Della and Colin didn’t have that (read my review on Royal Scandal….it is linked above).

I really liked Charlotte. She was so sweet and had an innocence that just made you want to shelter her even more than she had been. She has been through a lot. From the deaths of her parents to finding out who her biological father was (read the book if you want to find out) to being outed by Brooks. she has been through the wringer. It left her with anxiety issues and honestly, as a person who suffers from anxiety, I really liked that the author chose not to make her issues go away. Instead, they were right out in the open and she was dealing with them as a regular, real life person would do.  There are a couple of huge secrets that aren’t revealed until halfway through the book. Both I didn’t see coming….at all and both made me go “No way” when they were revealed. So, slow clap to the author for doing that!!

Brooks, who was made out to be a jerk in the first place, really wasn’t that bad of a guy once you got to know him. He had a razor-sharp wit and he knew how to negotiate a bargin….which is what he did when he first made that deal with Charlotte. He was a business person up until David contacted him with an envelope and some damning information about Charlotte and Imogen. He just couldn’t open that envelope. It was then that I knew he had serious feelings for her.

Besides that two plot twists that I named above, there is one that I saw coming from a mile away. It is my only complaint about the book is that. I really wish that it didn’t go there.

The sex between Charlotte and Brooks were very, very hot and they did the nasty in some pretty interesting areas. Just read the book to find out where 🙂

The end of the book was pretty bittersweet. It was sweet because Charlotte did get her heart’s desire but bitter because Brooks had to take such a personal hit. I loved the epilogue and can’t wait to read Theo’s story!!

I did have a couple of questions:

Was Briggs accident truly an accident? Because with everything that was going on I wouldn’t have been surprised if it wasn’t.

Who sent that text to Brooks? If it wasn’t Charlotte and if it wasn’t Imogene….then who was it?

Why is Davis so darn slippery? He is seriously starting to annoy me

How many stars will I give Royal Affair: 4

Why: Great characters, an engaging plot and hot sex equal a fantastic read

Will I reread: Yes

Will I recommend to family and friends: Yes

Age range: Adult

Why: Sex, violence, and language

**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

Sex in the Sticks (Love Hurts: Book 1) by Sawyer Bennett


Sex in the Sticks (Love Hurts, #1)

Title: Sex in the Sticks

Author: Sawyer Bennett

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept

Date of publication: May 2nd, 2017

Genre: Romance

Number of pages: 225

POV: Alternating 1st person

Series: Love Hurts

Sex in the Sticks – Book 1

Jilted – Book 2 (expected publication date: July 11th, 2017)

Where you can find Sex in the Sticks: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

Wake up and feel the wood! In the first of a series of irresistible standalone romances from New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett, a city girl rediscovers love and lust in the Alaskan wilderness.

Valentine French may be the sassiest dating columnist in New York City, but the abundance of metrosexuals in her adopted metropolis is seriously cramping her style. Where are the beefy all-American boys? Hoping to find some inspiration, Val heads to Alaska, where the men outnumber the women fifteen to one and wrestle grizzly bears for sport. Or so she can only imagine. Suddenly the most eligible bachelorette in a town full of horny lumberjacks, Val is writing her best columns ever. But if she doesn’t get her nose out of her laptop, she just might miss out on Mr. Right.
 
Logan Burke is the sheriff of the little podunk town that Val finds so charmingly backward. He’s not that different from the guys she’s using for her little experiment; it’s just that one date would never be enough for Logan. As he listens to Val complain about love over beers in the local tavern, he realizes that she can’t see the forest for the trees. Because if she would ever give up her Prada bags and fourteen-dollar martinis, Logan would give her the only luxury that matters: his heart.

My review:

This is my first book that I have read from Sawyer Bennett and I am going to say this now, it will not be my last. I will admit that I was a little put off by the blurb when I read it on NetGalley but decided that I should give this book a try. I am glad I did because this book was a great read. It had humor, drama and let’s not forget lots and lots of hot sex.

I really didn’t care for Val at the beginning of Sex in the Sticks. She came across as a poor little rich girl who was bored of her life in New York City. And when I mean bored with her life, she was bored with the metrosexual men that she was dating. She was a well-known blogger who wrote about her escapades and her dates, lately, were boring her. Actually, if it wasn’t for her hair color and that she was über rich, she reminded me of Carrie Bradshaw from Sex in the City:

Carrie Bradshaw opening credits.jpg

Photo credit

Val needed a change of scenery and when her cousin suggested Alaska, where the men to woman ratio are 15 to 1, she jumped on it and planned on blogging about it. All I could do is shake my head and laugh because I knew that she would be out of her element. Which she was. From the minute she landed in Alaska, I was giggling when she got herself into predicaments. Except for the one with Sassy, her dog. I didn’t giggle at that because it was dangerous. But, by the end of the book, I liked her. She totally shed her poor little rich girl skin. I will go as far to say that she found herself in Alaska.

Logan exuded hotness from the minute he appeared in the story and he seemed to be immune to Val’s charm. Actually, he was kind of put off by her deciding to date her way through town. His immunity to Val was worn down after he was called to the local bar because according to a jealous woman, she was drunk, naked, and dancing on tables. When he arrived to arrest her, he discovered that she was two out of the three. That’s when, in my eyes, he gave in…haha. But it was when she was lost in the woods, that the magic happened and you could see him falling in love with Val.

Let’s talk about the sex. I loved that Val was sexually confident. She knows what she liked when she liked it and how she liked it. Having a sexually confident woman in these types of books is pretty awesome. I also think it was pretty awesome that Logan was willing to go along with what Val liked. What also cracked me up was how shocked she was over Logan’s size. I thought to myself “Val, you are a sexually active woman and it is hard for me to believe you have never seen one as big as his”.  Every, single time. Made me giggle during scenes that I shouldn’t because I just had a mental image of her doing something like this when she saw it.

 

I loved the end of the book. Everything was done on Val’s terms and Logan, well, let’s just say that it took him a while to go along with her plans. The epilogue had to have been my favorite part of the book. I love happy endings!!!

How many stars will I give Sex in the Sticks: 4

Why: Relatable characters, a plotline that was pretty funny and page burning sex scenes.

Will I reread: Yes

Will I recommend to family and friends: Yes

Age range: Adult

Why: Sex and language

**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

Walk of Shame by Lauren Layne


Walk of Shame

Title: Walk of Shame

Author: Lauren Layne

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept

Date of publication: April 18th, 2017

Genre: Romance

Number of pages: 218

POV: Alternating 1st person and 3rd person

Where you can find Walk of Shame: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

Sparks fly between a misunderstood New York socialite and a cynical divorce lawyer in this lively standalone rom-com from the USA Today bestselling author of Blurred Lines and Love Story.

Pampered heiress Georgianna Watkins has a party-girl image to maintain, but all the shopping and clubbing is starting to feel a little bit hollow—and a whole lot lonely. Though Georgie would never admit it, the highlights of her week are the mornings when she comes home at the same time as her uptight, workaholic neighbor is leaving to hit the gym and put in a long day at the office. Teasing him is the most fun Georgie’s had in years—and the fuel for all her naughtiest daydreams.

Celebrity divorce attorney Andrew Mulroney doesn’t have much time for women, especially spoiled tabloid princesses who spend more time on Page Six than at an actual job. Although Georgie’s drop-dead gorgeous, she’s also everything Andrew resents: the type of girl who inherited her penthouse instead of earning it. But after Andrew caps one of their predawn sparring sessions with a surprise kiss—a kiss that’s caught on camera—all of Manhattan is gossiping about whether they’re a real couple. And nobody’s more surprised than Andrew to find that the answer just might be yes.

My review:

I had to giggle at the title of this book. Everyone knows what a “Walk of Shame” is but I will refresh those who don’t know. The definition is taken from Urban Dictionary:

“Walk of Shame

The walk from another person(s) house, apartment, condo, dorm, van, bar, park bench or other; to your place of residence wearing the same clothes you had on the night before.

Typically used when someone leaves the home of a sexual escapade (quite possibly with someone you met the night before) in the morning; hair sticking out in all directions, lines on your face, and missing at least one article of clothing.

In the event that your “Walk of Shame” did include sex, you may be wearing your partner’s clothes. If you did not have sex you probably did get into a fight, damaged property was escorted off someone’s premises, or in some way embarrassed yourself. In any case, you will need to check yourself for injuries.

Still half-drunk, I began the walk of shame to my room and made a futile attempt to recall all that I had done on Friturday.”
Now there are other more to the point on the Urban Dictionary website but I chose the more reader friendly. If you want to read the slightly raunchy, totally not PC definition, just click on the link above.
So, based on the definition I put up and my own personal experiences with walks of shame, I really was expecting a book that started and ended with sex and didn’t really have a plot. But what I read, instead, really surprised me.
Georgi was a sweetheart….once you got past her party girl exterior. I was actually kind of put off by that at first because she was rolling in as most people were getting up and going to work. But her sweetness and her positive outlook on life won me over. Plus, she knew how to dish it and take it, like a pro. Her interactions with Andrew had me laughing my butt off and I loved the Wizard of Oz references.
I couldn’t get a handle on Andrew at first. Because the story is mainly told from Georgi’s perspective, I really didn’t know what he felt about her. Actually, I felt the vibe I got from him is that he thought she was annoying. So, I was pretty surprised when the author turned to 3rd person to tell his part of the story and when I learned that he had feelings for Georgi and had feelings for her since he met her. I did a “Whaaa” when I read that because it did kind of blindside me (and yes, I knew they were getting together….I can still be blindsided).
I loved the romance between Georgi and Andrew because it was more real life (forgetting that she was an heiress and he made money hand over fist). They were frenemies first, then true friends and then the romance kicked in. I loved it!!
What I liked, even more, was that the sex was put off on in the book. The author allowed for her characters to develop feelings for each other before they bumped uglies. It was refreshing to read that because the sex didn’t take over the book.
I did figure out the plot twist that added drama to the book. I actually figured it out as it was happening but still, it was sad to read and I felt bad for all involved.
The end of the book was great and I loved the happy endings for everyone involved!!
How many stars will I give Walk of Shame: 3.5 (rounded up to 4 for Goodreads and Amazon)
Why: Written wonderfully with a good plot line and great characters
Will I reread: Yes
Will I recommend to family and friends: Yes
Age range: Adult
Why: Sex and language
**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

Hot Shot (Last Shot: Book 2) by Kelly Jamieson


Hot Shot (Last Shot, #2)

Title: Hot Shot

Author: Kelly Jamieson

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept

Date of publication: May 16th, 2017

Genre: Romance

Number of pages: 235

POV: 3rd person

Series: Last Shot

Body Shot – Book 1

Hot Shot – Book 2

Where you can find Hot Shot: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

A former Navy SEAL and current bad boy bar owner learns to trust a free spirit in this steamy novel of unexpected romance from the bestselling author of Body Shot and the Heller Brothers series.

Marco Solis knows that if he gets too close to people they disappear. His parents were deported back to Mexico when he was fourteen, his fiancée married someone else while he was in the military, and now his business partner’s spending more time with his girl than with Marco. For better or worse, that’s how Marco meets Carrie Garner. She’s legitimately model-hot. She’s also a nut—a wild, artsy, unapproachable nut. So why is Marco so interested in cracking her shell?

Although Carrie Garner is a natural in front of the camera, her dream is to make it as a photographer. Soon she’ll be heading to Spain for design school, and she’ll miss her best friend, Hayden, like crazy. She’ll even miss Hayden’s boyfriend, Beck—but she won’t miss Beck’s partner, Marco. Bossy, brooding, and annoyingly sexy, Marco really pushes her buttons, though he obviously wouldn’t mind pushing her buttons in an up-against-the-wall, hard-and-fast kind of way. The craziest part is if Carrie lets him do that, well . . . she may never want to leave.

My review:

Hot Shot is the dreaded 2nd book in the Last Shot series. If you have followed my blog for any length of time, you know my feelings about starting off reading 2nd books in a series and how I keep punishing myself by not looking the title up on Goodreads or Amazon before I ask for it from NetGalley. It is not often that I get the 2nd book in a series that actually could be read as a stand alone. Fortunately for Hot Shot, it can be read separately. Which I wasn’t expecting with how heavily the main characters from Body Shot are involved in Hot Shot. 

Marco was such a complex character and yes, I used the word complex in a romance novel. He had some deep-seated issues that I didn’t expect a former SEAL to have. The biggest one is his fear of abandonment, which stemmed from his parents being deported back to Mexico when he was 14, him losing track of his younger sister while being bounced from foster home to foster home and then his fiancé deciding to cheat on him while he was on deployment. So, it was understandable that he was uptight and didn’t trust people outside of his SEAL brothers.

He was also probably the single sexiest character that I have read to date. I seriously wish that I could make him jump off the book pages into my life, that’s how much I loved this character. He was funny (the one liners were hilarious and “Occupying Vagistan” stands out the most even though he didn’t say it), brutally honest about what he wants from Carrie and omg, he talked dirty during sex. Like legit dirty talk, use your imagination…trying to keep this review Amazon PC….lol. Besides that, he was also kind and very fair…..read the book to find out what I mean. So, the perfect man.

In a way, Carrie was just as complex as Marco. Her issues, though, were more that she didn’t feel that she fit into her family. Her brothers and sister were all businesspeople/lawyers, as was her parents. I actually didn’t like Carrie’s mother or sister, at all. The way they talked to Carrie’s grandmother, a free-spirited ex-burlesque dancer, made me fume while reading those scenes. No wonder Carrie felt the way she did about her modeling career and her budding photography career. Ugh, made me so mad.

Out of all the characters in all the books I have read, I think I related to Carrie the most. I loved that the author wrote her as this slightly raunchy girl who wasn’t afraid to go after her dreams…even if it meant leaving loved ones behind. I think, if she was real, I could be BFF’s with her (move out-of-the-way, Hayden…..lol).

Let’s talk about the sex scenes. Oh. My. God. They were beyond hot and I loved that Marco was a dirty talker. But even more, I loved that Carrie wasn’t the type of girl who just laid there and let the guy do all the work. Which made those part of the books burn.

The storyline with Carrie’s niece was pretty sad, not that I think about it and again, my dislike for her sister grew. But, I loved what came out of it and how it was resolved.

I will say that the end of the book had me in tears. I think I ugly cried from Hayden and Beck’s wedding to the epilogue. Oh and by the way, I thought the epilogue was probably the best part of the book. I am looking forward to seeing what Cade’s book is going to be like. Seeing that he is a manwhore, I can’t wait to read his story (the girls showing up at the bar was hilarious…btw).

How many stars will I give Hot Shot: 4

Why: Oh where do I start. This book was funny, sad and sensual….all rolled up into a wonderfully written story. What I wrote in my review doesn’t even begin to explain the book so it would be better if you all just read it instead. The only reason why I didn’t give it five stars is because of Carrie’s family. I couldn’t stand them.

Will I reread: Yes

Will I recommend to family and friends: Yes

Age range: Adult

Why: Explicit sex, explicit language. No violence

**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

Alpha Kaden (Alpha: Book 2) by Midika Crane


Alpha Kaden

Title: Alpha Kaden

Author: Midika Crane

Publisher: Inkitt

Date of publication: May 17th, 2017

Genre: Romance, Paranormal, Shapeshifters, Werewolves

Number of pages: 234

POV: Alternating 1st person

Series: Alpha

Alpha Landon – Book 1

Alpha Kaden – Book 2

Alpha Grayson – Book 3

Alpha Jasper – Book 4

Where you can  find Alpha Kaden: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

“Lock your doors. Hold them tight. Close your windows. Every night. Don’t go out, if he’s there. Always live in total fear.”

Everyone knows of Alpha Kaden, a man of twisted riddles and cryptic puzzles. His identity is one of them. His touch, another. He is feared throughout all 13 packs for his reputation of stealing young women out of their beds. And tonight he has come to steal Mara to make her a player in his wicked game.

But when Mara discovers the truth behind his sadistic mind games everything changes and she finds herself questioning what is real, and what is not. Mara always assumed her mate would be a man from her own pack. A good man. Not a sadistic, sinful Alpha named Kaden.

My review:

Good werewolf books are hard to come by. Usually, the author chooses to make the books either all about the sex (which isn’t a bad thing…believe me) or all about the violence. I can count on one hand the books that I have read that actually incorporates the two and does it well. So, when I was offered the ARC for Alpha Kaden and read the blurb, I thought to myself “Eh, going to be a typical werewolf book. Either a lot of sex or a lot of violence“. I decided to accept it because there was something about the cover that called to me. I don’t know if it was Mara’s expression or if it was the way that Kaden was glowering behind her. It was like the book said, “Don’t judge me by the blurb, read me“. Let me tell you guys, I am glad that I did because all I have to say is “Wow!!”

What I liked, and what people are going to say “Whaaaaat” about is that the main characters didn’t shapeshift into their wolves very often. But that didn’t take away from their powers. They are able to smell like wolves and the Alpha males definitely came across as Alphas. Kaden’s scenes, especially in the beginning, exuded his Alphaness (is that a word….lol). It was actually refreshing to read a book where they weren’t turning into a wolf every other chapter and it made me enjoy the book even more.

This is a first for the last few books that I have read/reviewed. I absolutely loved Mara. While she was very innocent about the ways of the werewolves outside of her clan, she didn’t let that hold her back. She wasn’t afraid to stand up to Kaden when she met him and every time after that. She also wasn’t afraid to let people know what she felt. Coen, Kase, Amelia, Landon and oh, let’s not forget Kaden. She needled him without even knowing she was.

Let’s talk about Kaden. He was the epitome of the boogeyman. The Purity Clan didn’t let their girls near the windows after dark because he took them. And he definitely did play the part. But little things slipped out. He treated her differently and he was different when he was around certain people. He did give off a dark vibe throughout the book. Very dark but there was light in him too. I felt awful when he told Mara the truth about him. Actually, my exact words were “Holy sh-t!! No way” after their talk.

The romance between Kaden and Mara, at first, really didn’t jive with me. Only because she was his prisoner and I really didn’t like it when the captor and the prisoner fall in love. It always screams Stockholm Syndrome to me. There was a definite attraction but it was kept under wraps until she went to Landon and Amelia’s clan to do a very dirty mission. It was only after Kaden kisses her (she was drunk and passed out) that it is revealed what she is to him and how hard he is trying to protect her. When she realizes what he is to her….Oh. My. God. Talk about an insanely hot, hot, hot sex scene.

Like I said above, Kaden really wasn’t what he projected. But I was surprised at who was behind his reputation and the reasons that this person had for forcing Kaden to do what he did. Put it this way, I wasn’t happy when certain events happened and that person got what was coming to them. Just saying. Wasn’t sad at all.

The secondary characters made the book. While Kaden and Mara were the stars, the secondary characters were close seconds. The author was able to successfully weave these characters into the main and secondary plotlines without them taking over the book. Which I enjoyed….a lot.

The end of the book was a little sad and it left on a small cliffhanger. Which means I have to read book 3 to see what happens with Grayson and Lexie. Not that I would mind.

How many stars will I give Alpha Kaden: 4

Why: I really enjoyed reading Alpha Kaden. It was a truly original werewolf love story that kept me engrossed for the book.

Will I reread: Yes

Will I recommend to family and friends: Yes

Age range: Adult

Why: Sex, language, and violence

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**