Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Review: and Falling, Fly by Skyler White

In a dark and seedy underground of burned-out rock stars and angels- turned-vampires, a revolutionary neuroscientist and a fallen angel must pit medicine against mythology in an attempt to erase their tortured pasts...but at what cost?

Olivia, vampire and fallen angel of desire, is hopeless...and damned. Since the fall from Eden, she has hungered for love, but fed only on desire. Dominic O'Shaughnessy is a neuroscientist plagued by impossible visions. When his research and her despair collide at L'OtelMathillide- a subterranean hell of beauty, demons, and dreams-rationalist and angel unite in a clash of desire and damnation that threatens to destroy them both.

First off, let me say that the acquisitive and shallow part of me ( I must be part valkyrie) loves this cover. It's so pretty and honestly it represents the book rather well, I think, which is unfortunately rare in books now days it seems. Also, note the title. It's unique and right away you know that the author's writing is going to be different.

Let me just say that this is not a kick butt action Urban Fantasy novel. It is a dark fantasy and as such ( in my opinion) is more about the journey than the destination. The story itself is more a compilation of themes and probing questions than a real story of vampires and angels. Honestly, if it was only a story of vamps and angels and mythological creatures, it wouldn't be able to stand up to criticism. There are just too many things that don't stay true to the apparent rules of the world and too many things left unexplained or that just don't make sense. However, this book isn't as much another vamp story in a genre saturated with them. It is a story of desire. Of despair. Of hope when there is no reason to. Of getting what you want versus what will make you happy. It's a journey of self discovery and asks the question of "why are we here?"

I love the way desire as a theme was handled in this book. We often associate desire with evil, with the fall, with sin, but this novel points out the oft times overlooked truth that desire is ultimately what drives us, to good or to ill. For example, if you were born in desperate poverty you may desire to grow up and have money so that you never have to feel hunger and lack again. You would then try harder in school than those that aren't motivated by the same driving desires as you are and would aim for college and beyond that a good job and amassing of financial success and your likelihood of reaching your goal is probably much greater than the kids who did not desire it as much as you did. On the other hand, we can be ruled by our desires to the point of destructive behavior. Just because you desire to be numb and drink to achieve it does not mean that you will be happy just because you have what you thought you wanted.

The characters in the story, most specifically Dominic and Olivia face such a dilemma thought they don't really realize it. They have both been striving for something they desire above all else, but when they get what they want will they find the peace they so desperately seek?

The story is often surreal and feels more like you've entered a strange dream than a solid reality, but the characters felt real to me. I cared what happened and I hoped against hope that there could be a happy ending for them. The writing itself is a bit heavy handed at times. I get that it's mood writing meant to set a certain feel and it does, but there were many times when more could be said with less and Olivia's angsty narrative often felt as if she were talking in circles. Though the writing wasn't as tight as it could be the fact that the characters were well done and made me care kept me coming back to the story to see how things would turn out for them.

The ending was a bit confusing and I honestly wondered at one point how we got there and what exactly had happened and was happening. That was slightly distracting and could have been handled better, in my opinion. There was one truth that I was able to see in the end, though, that made it bittersweet and helped to satisfy me and that's what really counts.

If you're a fan of dark fantasy and want to take a trippy ride filled with mythological creatures and neuroscience then you should add and Falling, Fly to your collection. I believe the author has talent and potential and I look forward to seeing her hone her craft and clean up her work more in the future.

In the end, there were several plot holes and things that just got confusing, but the story stayed true to the themes that it was trying to develop and the mood it was trying to convey and I felt it was a journey worth taking.

I give and Falling, Fly a solid B as my final grade. I appreciate that Ms. White wasn't afraid to try something new and different and she blended two ostensibly unblendable things like mythology and neuroscience and she did it surprisingly well. Kudos to Ms. White for her success there.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Review: Pleasure of a Dark Prince by Kresley Cole

#1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole enraptures again with this seductive tale of a fierce werewolf prince who will stop at nothing to protect the lovely archer he covets from afar.


Lucia the Huntress: as mysterious as she is exquisite, she harbors secrets that threaten to destroy her — and those she loves.


Garreth MacRieve, Prince of the Lykae: the brutal Highland warrior who burns to finally claim this maddeningly sensual creature as his own.


From the shadows, Garreth has long watched over Lucia. Now, the only way to keep the proud huntress safe from harm is to convince her to accept him as her guardian. To do this, Garreth will ruthlessly exploit Lucia's greatest weakness — her wanton desire for him.

Ok, so let me just say that anyone who knows me from Twitter knows that I love Kresley Cole with mad, passionate, stalker like love and her Immortals After Dark series is crackalicious goodness. Pleasure of a Dark Prince is the 7th full length addition to the series, but if you're anal (like me) then it's actually the 9th installment when you count the two short story/novellas that were released in anthologies.

So, we first met Lucia and Garreth in A Hunger Like No Other, the story of Garreth's brother Lachlain, king of the Lykae for those keeping score, and Lucia's neice, Emma. Although, I do believe we got a glimpse of Lucia in The Warlord Wants Forever the short story in the antho Playing Easy to Get which was Wroth and Myst's story.

The thing with this series is the timeline. It's.....screwy. Yes, I love that several of the books are happening at the same time, and so we get to see some events from multiple points of view, but it gets a bit jumbled when it then jumps forward or backward in time and you start losing a point of reference for what the hell is going on in the Lore, the preternatural world in the IAD series. Honestly, I don't completely get why Ms. Cole put out some other couples' books before this one. You meet characters in a book and it would seem natural that their story would come next since they're so closely related to the characters or events of the previous story, but instead we get to wait several books to finally then jump back in the timeline and pick up the thread of that couple's story. It's starting to give me a headache.

Now, don't get me wrong, this story has all the ingredients of a hot and entertaining story and I've been waiting for it for like 8 books, but it felt a little slow to get started. Why? Because the first 16 chapters are going back in the timeline to when the first story (or three) were taking place to pick up Lucia and Garreth's first meeting. I didn't mind this at first because I really wanted to see what was hinted at in A Hunger Like No Other of their courtship to be fleshed out and I wanted to see some of the events happening to the other couples through the eyes of Lucia and Garreth. Problem was that as good as Ms. Cole is at making sure that events are pretty much the same she still missed a few things. Wroth and Myst were completely AWOL and Emma and Lachlain seemed different to me. Especially the couple times that we saw them later in the book. So, then we jump ahead a year and by now I'm lost because within that year a lot has happened in the Lore and now I'm confused as to what is going on with whom. This is where the real fun begins.

I love that Lucia beat the crap out of Garreth for a frickin year and he just kept coming like a freight train. If you don't like your heroes a bit psycho with the possessiveness and determination to win their ladies then I warn you you won't like this series, but if you're like me and love you some hot sexy alpha men that love their women to the point of madness and kick ass women that are just as dangerous and so not easy to win, then you will love this series.

Honestly, for all my issues with this book as far as timeline and even pacing (the time on the boat was kinda boring to me) the interaction between Garreth and Lucia and even the lead couple and other characters of the Lore was great. The passion was there, the sex was hot and there was plenty of action and killing of things (which, as you know, I'm also a fan of). Regin seemed even more immature and a pain in this one than in the previous books, but I'm still looking forward to her story and the dude that'll tame that wildcat. I loved Garreth's interactions with his brother and how Lachlain and Bowen had Garreth's back. One of my fave scenes was when Lachlain tells Garreth that his mate, Emma, pointed to a little human boy and said she wanted one. Well, Emma just meant she wanted kids, but Lachlain and Garreth both start trying to plot how they're going to procure a little mortal child for her. I laughed so hard at that. That just so illustrates the fundamental way these guys think. Their women say the want something and the guys all band together to make it so. I so want one of these guys for my very own.

Overall the book was good. There was hot lovin and interesting characters and danger and apocalyptic happenings and Nix was her usual awesome self. I loved finally finding out more about these two characters and the ending was sweet and totally sets the stage for the next wave of drama that's hitting the Lore. This series just keeps picking up pace as far as the action going down in the Lore and we see all the players coming together for some sort of final confrontation. I can't wait to jump into the next one and see what crazy hijinks will happen next.

My final grade for this one is a B+. It was very enjoyable but it wasn't my favorite installment in the series.

You can purchase this book here

Or here

Another review of Pleasure of a Dark Prince by KB

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Review: Rule's Bride by Kat Martin

I received this book to review from
I can't find an official blurb, but this is the info for the book off of NetGalley's site:

Unrepentant rake Rule Dewar is living the good life when a most surprising event occurs—he falls in love with his wife. After their strategic “marriage of commerce” three years ago, Rule quite forgot about Violet Griffin, the teenage heiress to a Boston manufacturing fortune. He simply spoke his vows, took over her father’s business and returned to England to resume his usual pursuits: high-priced wine, high-stakes gambling and high-born women. Yet when Violet unexpectedly appears at Rule's London townhouse—he can't resist his sophisticated wife. Violet, however, is not so easily led: she has her own ideas and is seeking an annulment to marry again. But as Rule attempts to win her over, someone else is determined to get rid of him for good

So, we have Rule and Violet. Two people that married several years ago to appease her dying father, but haven't seen each other since the wedding. Violet decides she's done with this farce of a marriage that was never consummated and hightails it to London to tell her errant hubby to his face that she wants an annulment.

Rule remembers Violet as a gawkish tomboy that he married and deserted. Now she shows up on his doorstep a woman grown full of fire and passion and he decides that marriage to her suits him just fine.

I was a little disappointed by how easily Violet fell pray to her husband's charms, but I also liked that even though he seduces her body, he can't seduce her independence and determination out of her.

Rule has trouble admitting to love and Violet doesn't fully trust him so they have a host of issues to overcome to make their marriage work. Also there's a murder mystery and Violet's other love interest to add some problems to their marital bliss.

The story of Rule and Violet was a nice love story of two strong willed people that were brought together by circumstances beyond their control and that have a chance to find happiness if they'll just be bold enough to grab it. There was also a charming side romance between both of their best friends that I thought was touching and I rooted as much for that couple as I did for the main couple.

I don't feel like Ms Martin did anything particularly new with the genre, but she did tell a charming story of a reformed rake and the independent and strong willed woman who loves him.

My final grade for this story is a B.

This book will be published April 27, 2010 and is available for preorder from Barnes and Noble and Amazon.

Birthday Wishes

A big fat yummy birthday wish goes out to my gf, Wendy, aka The Book Lush! Make sure you razz her today about what an old lady she is now. You can even show her some love on Twitter. Her name there is @omgitswendy.

So, Wendy, here's my birthday wish for you:


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Winner of Archangel's Kiss by Nalini Singh

Thanks all that entered the contest for a copy of Archangel's Kiss by Nalini Singh.
The winner according to is......Misty!!
I have already e-mailed the winner and hope to hear from her soon.
Thanks for playing and stay tuned for more contests in the future.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Release Day and Contest for Archangel's Kiss by Nalini Singh

Ok, my lovelies. Today is the official release day for Archangel's Kiss by Nalini Singh and in honor of that and the fact that I lurve this book with all the mad lurve my shriveled jaded heart has to give, I am offering a chance to win a copy! This book received my first A grade of 2010 and you can read my review of it here.
Now, all you have to do to enter is be a follower of my blog, and leave a comment on this post. That's it. Contest is international so have fun with it!
Contest will close on Tuesday Feb 9 at 11:59 PM PST.

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