A MelanieM Review: Firestorm (SoulShares #4) by Rory Ni Coileain

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

FirestormFinalCoverCuinn an Dearmad is the last surviving Fae Loremaster, and he’s just seen the beginning of the death of the Realm, the land the Fae fled to after the battle with the Marfach.  The Fae sealed off The Realm from Earth to protect the last of the Fae and insure that the Marfach didn’t follow them.  The method they used cost them all the Loremasters but one.    But now cutoff from Earth’s magic, the Realm is dying and the only hope of stopping it starts with Cuinn finding the Prince Royal of Fire, a baby he stole from the cradle, and lost in the human world, many years ago.  But where to start looking?  It seems that Fate and Fae have combined to make the impossible happen.

Rian Sheridan was found and adopted by a Northern Irish Catholic family who whose Da was already deeply involved with the IRA and the liberation movement in Belfast. For all his 21 years, fire has been Rian’s companion and curse. His human parents loved him without knowing who exactly Rian was, a Prince of the Demesne of Fire and the hope of the Fae Realm. But fire was both his pain and salvation when his world and sense of self was destroyed by the Orangemen on July 12.  Now all Rian knows is pain, and a need for punishment.  But he is about to get something more…much, much more.  A future and a name for who and what he is.

Cuinn an Dearmad or Cuinn the Exiled and Prince Rian Aodan whose signet ring, Croi na Dothan, means he’s the heart of the Flame, are on a collision course with Fate and each other.  For Cuinn and Rian are SoulShares, something Cuinn thought only happened between Fae and Human, not Fae and Fae.  But will Rian be able to accept Cuinn, the man responsible for stealing him away from his Fae mother and the agony he experienced on Earth?  And Cuinn?  Can he overcome his guilt and foresworn duty to heal his SoulShare and with him save both worlds?

Firestorm is the last and, quite naturally, the most incendiary book in the SoulShares series by Rory Ni Coileain.  Through three stories and elements, we have watched the Fae of the Demesnes of Earth (Tiernan), Air (Conall), and Water (Lochlann Doran) find their human SoulShares and engage in battle with the Marfach.  Now time has run out for The Realm and Earth with the last of the magic dries up killing The Realm in the process and the Marfach plans for Armageddon on Earth.  Three couples stand prepared but they are incomplete without the last element of fire.

Having brought her characters and readers to this highly suspenseful and anticipatory state, author Rory Ni Coileain ups the stakes with her last two major characters.  One is Cuinn an Dearmad or Cuinn the Exiled, the last Fae Loremaster, the missing chink in the Pattern.  The absent Fae of the Demesne of Fire? A Prince stolen at birth from Queen Nuala, the Fae ruler and deposited with a human Irish family.  The culprit?  That would be Cuinn an Dearmad who to the day carries the burden and guilt of the pain he inflicted on an innocent.

Ni Coileain’s complicated plot becomes even more convoluted with the pairing of Cuinn and Rian, each carrying with them a past and foretold future even more tortuous and tangled then any of the others.  Cuinn has been the willing puppet of the Loremasters  plans and manipulations with Rian one of their subjects in the harshest way.  Rian has paid in anguish and torment just as he turned 21 and came into his magic.  Now Cuinn must not only heal Rian, convince him  about the reality of Fae and his own true birthright but get all of them prepared for the final stage of the Loremasters machinations.   Rory Ni Coileain is quite the puppetmaster herself to keep all these major themes and plot threads unreeling simultaneously while building the suspense and anxiety for all involved.

The point of view changes from the SoulShares (all of them)  to Marfach’s zombie host and back again.  Its effective and harrowing if a little complicated. But it’s Rian who captures our empathy and shared pain with his constant, overwhelming need for abuse and  sexual punishment.  The basis for this need is shattering for the readers and for Cuinn who by then has become his SoulShare.  Cuinn also has secrets he has been hiding and all must come out. Not just to Rian but all the other couples involved in the battle against the Marfach and the ley lines under Purgatory, the DC leather bar.

How I loved this part.  I adored having all the couples I have become so fond of here at the final installment and still managed to make more room in my affections for the tormented couple of Cuinn and Rian.  Rian is fire!  The images that Rory Ni Coileain uses to build his portrait are as combustible as his element.   Hot, powerful and quick tempered, Rian is as incendiary as it comes.  But the center of Rian is total darkness and pain and the author brings that to life as well.  Cuinn is all cold guilt and responsibility to Rian’s heat. Cuinn’s character is more removed from emotion, more bound to service and the change that happens to Cuinn is purposeful and believable.  Great characters both of them, Ni Coileain balances the growing relationship between Rian and Cuinn against the ever increasing desperation of the Marfach and the Realm.   And at times, the balance is undone by the emotions and events that are occurring within the story.  The march towards action or Rian and Cuinn?  More of the story  comes down on Rian and Cuinn here and while that works beautifully towards making their SoulShare real, it takes away from the Marfach’s impact at times.

Never more so than at the ending.  Some will love it,, others not so much.  Yes, there is resolution to be found here and yet there are also plenty of openings for this series to continue.  I wish I knew which way the author was leaning.  I was almost satisfied and yet….I left the story and the series with a vague sense of  incompleteness and a bit of irritation.   Normally, that would bring the rating down considerably.  But Firestorm and the entire SoulShares series  is so beautifully woven through with its lore, imagery, characters, and plot, that its hard not to celebrate Rory Ni Coileain’s writing in this series with a high  rating.

Do I recommend this book and series?  Absolutely.  Its remarkable, its entertaining, and its magical, full of pain,obstacles,  heartache and love.  Don’t miss out on any of the four stories and like me, continue to hope for a fifth.

Cover artist:  Allen Penn.  Of all 4 covers, this is my favorite.  Dramatic and hot!

Sales Links:        Ravenous Romance          All Romance eBooks                 Amazon        Firestorm

Books in the SoulShares series in the order they were written and should be read are:

Hard As Stone (SoulShares #1)
Gale Force (Soulshares #2)
Deep Plunge (SoulShares #3)
Firestorm (SoulShares #4)

Book Details:
Kindle Edition, 248 pages
Published February 27th 2014 by Ravenous Romance
ASINB00IOWB2BW
edition languageEnglish
seriesSoulShares #4

It’s Whistle Stop Time for L.C. Chase on her Pulling Leather Book Tour (contest)!

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Welcome, L.C. Chase, author, and cover artist of Pulling Leather (Pickup Men #3)!

G’day everyone! Welcome to my Pulling Leather blog tour and a peek into the world of rodeo cowboys. (The official schedule can be found here.) This wouldn’t be a proper tour without some prezzies, of course, so read on for giveaway details. Thank you for kicking off my new tour, and to all of you for hopping in the saddle to ride along!

PullingLeather_500x750Pulling Leather Blurb:

The toughest ride of his life is all in his head.

Bull rider Scott Gillard has a reputation for quick fists and harsh words. What no one knows is where that anger comes from. After a shocking incident sends him into a tailspin, he knows he needs help: he’s been fighting a battle he could never win. Now he’s trying to navigate a new life and embrace his true self, but some days are easier than others.

Pickup man Cory Ackerson has suffered his share of harassment, but his light still burns bright. He doesn’t let anything or anyone keep him down, so when he meets the rugged cowboy with a battered chip on his shoulder and regret in his dark eyes, all he wants to do is help.

As their unlikely friendship grows into something deeper, Scott must overcome his past to be the man Cory deserves, or lose his best chance at his own happily ever after.

You can read an excerpt and purchase Pulling Leather at Riptide Publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and All Romance eBooks!

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Pulling Leather Details:

Author & Cover Artist: L.C. Chase
eBook ISBN: 978-1-62649-161-8
eBook release: Sep 1, 2014
eBook Formats: pdf, mobi, html, epub
Word count: 52,000,Page count: 196
This title is #3 of the Pickup Men series.

Books in the Pick Up Men Series Include:

  • Pick Up Men
  • Let It Ride (Pick Up Men #2)
  • Pulling Leather (Pick Up Men #3)

Pulling Leather Sales Link at  Riptide Publishing.

About L.C. Chase:

Cover artist by day, author by night, L.C. Chase is a hopeless romantic and adventure seeker. After a decade of traveling three continents, she now calls the Canadian West Coast home. When not writing sensual tales of beautiful men falling love, she can be found designing book covers with said beautiful men, drawing, horseback riding, or hiking the trails with her goofy four-legged roommate.

L.C. is a 2014 Lambda Literary Award Finalist for Pickup Men; a 2013 EPIC eBook Awards Finalist for Long Tall Drink; and a 2013-2014 Ariana eBook Cover Art Awards Finalist. She also won an honorable mention in the 2012 Rainbow Awards for Riding with Heaven.

You can find out more about L.C., story extras, works in progress, and cover designs at her website, on her blog, or on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads. L.C. is also a proud member of Art= a collective of artists who donate a portion of their art sales to GLBTQ charities.

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PullingLeather_150x300The Big Tour Contest:

In celebration and thanks, I’m offering goodies for two lucky readers . . .
1 – COWBOYS IN PIXELS: One ebook copy of any title in my backlist. Open to worldwide entries.
2 – COWBOYS IN PRINT: One signed paperback copy of Long Tall Drink, the extended edition, Pickup Men or Let It Ride. Open to worldwide entries.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

Please use the Rafflecopter link below to enter and for additional contest details.

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In the Author Spotlight: Interview with Havan Fellows on her Hard, Sexy Men! (contest)

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Meet Havan Fellows!

Up Close and In the Author’s Interview Chair!

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 Contest:  Havan Fellows has stopped by for interview and brought a contest with her as well.  To enter to win, visit this rafflecopter link for the entry form and additional  contest details.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

Meet Havan Fellows! Creator of Wick, Rowen and so many other memorable characters and one of the authors of the Pulp Friction Author Group:

Oooooh…thank you for having me again, Melanie. You know I love visiting you and the cutie pie puppies! *sneaks puppies treats* What? Oh nothing is in my hands…um…now. 🙂 So you had some questions you wanted to ask me? *clears throat*

First maybe I should introduce myself…my name is Havan Fellows…I’m an author. I’ve written in different genres—het and M/M romance…but I’ve only so far published M/M romance (it’s my pleasure…guilty or otherwise hehe). I’m published with Breathless Press, Totally Bound, and self-published…and I also write with two terrific groups; Story Orgy (SO) and Pulp Friction (PF). I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a lucky lucky person…the amazing authors at Story Orgy and Pulp Friction have taught me more than any workshop or class could’ve…I owe a lot to them…especially my best friend—the multi-talented Lee Brazil (who writes for SO and PF also), Lee’s the one that kicked my assets into drive when I explained I wanted to write but was afraid to put myself out there. Did I mention really really lucky?

Now, a bad habit I have is the gift of babble…my father once said that I kinda just throw words out there and the listener has to collect them and put them into proper order to understand anything I say (maybe that explains my love of em-dashes and ellipses? lol)…and since I don’t want to prove him right…um…let’s get on with the questions, shall we?

STRW:  Where did you get your inspiration for Rowen?

Havan Fellows: Well, back in September or October of 2013 the PF group (Laura Harner, Tom Webb, Lee Brazil and myself) were having another one of our get-togethers…the wine was flowing, the laughter was contagious and the sexy pictures were stimulating…oh crap, TMI? Anyway, we were talking about next year…and if there would be a next year. Of course we all wanted to give PF another go…and Flagstaff seemed like a terrific idea for the backdrop…but I was faced with my normal fears. I always worry that I’ll just recycle characters—and Wick is an epic character in my opinion…but not one I want to take on for another year (he’s very high maintenance, let me tell you! lol). So I was wondering what would be the opposite of Wick? What about a quiet recluse? That had merit, and would work well in a cabin in a campground in the middle of almost nowhere. So Rowen was born…and grew in my mind very quickly.

STRW:  Sometimes characters are too big for one series. Wick is like that. Is Rowen another?

Havan Fellows: I think that goes back to my Wick is epic comment, huh? Guess I jumped the gun…lol. I don’t know if Rowen is, yet. I don’t plan stuff like that out ahead—and I’m very grateful when others think that way toward my characters. In fact, even though Rowen wormed his way into my heart before I finished writing the first book, I didn’t think others would take to him like I did. He doesn’t make it easy for people to understand or like him, but the feedback I’m getting about Rowen is amazing and really makes me smile. Thanks to all the Rowen lovers – you have spurred me on throughout all the books. 🙂

STRW:  How many stories are you working on at one time?

Havan Fellows: Well I always have a PF book going it seems (already started on Final Blow – you should see the opening for it *blinks*)…and I have my Monday prompt story with Story Orgy (free reads every Monday yay!!!)…and sometimes (like now) I have a third book I’m trying to get to a publishable state of mind.

STRW:  Will there be a Pulp Friction 2015?

Havan Fellows: Ahhh…now that is the question…and soon we might actually have an answer to it.

STRW:  Favorite character of yours?

Havan Fellows: Now now now…I love all of my main characters equally (eyes the trouble makers—Wick & Shan). Now that I’ve given the PC answer…there is something about an imperfect person finding redemption and becoming someone they never thought they could be…and having others see the good in them they don’t feel is there. I believe I hit that mark with Jude from Judging Jude. Even though he thought he was trash, a select few always saw the good he didn’t even realize he did.

STRW:  Do you listen to music as you write and if so, is there a type of music?

Havan Fellows: Nope…I may listen to a song before I write to get me in the mood, but during writing I kinda need quiet. I like to sing and move when I hear music…and my hands don’t stay on the keyboard…lol.

STRW:  Favorite book you read as a child. What impact did it have on you.

Havan Fellows: I think all of Christopher Pike’s books hit me hard. I remember dragging my mama to the bookstore and picking out two of his books each time…from him I worked my way up to Stephen King and Dean Koontz (OMG Lightning by Dean Koontz will stick with you forever!) If you are looking for a specific classic book, I’m not sure I could name one. I was awful at keeping my concentration on books I was forced to read…but the ones I chose to read—now they were something else!

STRW:  If Wick could have super powers, what would they be?

Havan Fellows: HA! Dangerous. Probably nothing that would make him invincible…taking away the threat of defeat or death would lesson his fun in a situation. No x-ray vision or anything like that either…he doesn’t go where he isn’t openly invited, it’s half the fun to make something beg him for it, lol. Oh wait! He does have super powers…he’s named them Banyu…lmao.

 STRW:  What’s next up for Havan Fellows?

HF: Hopefully something brilliant and quirky and funny, with a side of steamy and interesting? Am I aiming too high? How about settling for Final Blow from PF and maybe the first book in a trilogy I’m working on unofficially titled Chance at Trust – the trilogy itself isn’t named yet, darn that always gets me. 🙂

Once again, thank you Melanie for having me and thanks to all that stayed long enough to read these thanks…lol. I would love it if you left a comment—perhaps telling us what type of character worms their way into your hearts most often? That would be interesting (and I might take notes for a future book! lol) But seriously, play with the Rafflecopter (he’s loves being manhandled)—there are two prizes up for grabs for two different winners…a $10 gift card to All Romance e-books and a complete set of my Pulp Friction 2014 books (including Final Blow, which will be whisked to you when it is available!)

Thanks, Havan, for stopping by and all the wonderful stories offered up as part of the contest.  I can’t wait for Final Blow to come out!

Follow Havan Fellows at:PF4_BlownChance400x600

Cover Reveal Time for Angel Martinez’ No Fae Is An Island! (contest)

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Its release time for the 4th Book, No Fae is an Island,  in Angel Martinez’ Endangered Fae series, a favorite of mine!  Ready to see what’s next for this wonderful  group of characters?  Keep reading for more information and contest details…

 

Book Name: No Fae Is An Island
Goodreads Link:
Author Name: Angel Martinez
Publisher:  MLR Press LLC
Sales Links: http://www.mlrbooks.com/books.php

Author Bio:

While Angel Martinez is the erotic fiction pen name of a writer of several genres, she writes both kinds of gay romance – Science Fiction and Fantasy. Currently living part time in the hectic sprawl of northern Delaware, (and full time inside the author’s head) Angel has one husband, one son, two cats, a changing variety of other furred and scaled companions, a love of all things beautiful and a terrible addiction to the consumption of both knowledge and chocolate.

Author Contacts:

NoFaeIsAnIsland_200Title:  No Fae Is An Island (Endangered Fae #4) by Angel Martinez
Publisher: MLR Press
Cover Artist: Lex Valentine

Blurb:

Three years ago, Danu banished Diego for a time from the human world. Three years and three days doesn’t seem that long to be away from home but living among the wild fae can change a man and the human world returns the favor by changing while he’s gone. There’s a vampire on Tearmann Island’s security force. A curious selkie’s followed him home. So much to do to keep the world safe…but Diego’s no longer sure he has the right to interfere.

Theo Aguilar started his vampire life on the wrong side of the law. He’s killed and knows he’s dangerous if he doesn’t stay in control every moment. But the fae took him in and Prince Lugh has given him a position of trust. So when Diego and Finn are arrested on a diplomatic mission far from home, he knows his duty. He’s striking out on his own to rescue them, a lone vigilante once again, this time for the good guys. The only glitch? The selkie, Limpet, can’t seem to understand the alone part.

Categories: Contemporary, Fantasy, M/M Romance, Paranormal, Romance, Urban Fantasy

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No Fae Is An Island Excerpt:

“You don’t need to come with me.” Theo fought clenched teeth. The selkie was a friend of Mr. Sandoval’s and Finn’s, too—Finn who had been so kind to him after accidentally squashing him in dragon form. No need to be rude.

“Quite all right. I’ve nothing better to do.”

“You can’t come with me,” Theo said in the chilliest, sternest tone he could muster.

“Oh, of course I can. I see quite well at night.”

Theo squeezed his eyes shut against the headache. It shouldn’t have been there. He’d fed that morning and napped the rest of the day in lethargic, sated bliss. Fine. He’ll get bored and leave soon. “All right. But you have to be quiet.”

“Yes, yes, of course. In case something bad is here. A pack of nixes maybe. Oh, they’re bad. Or a kraken tries to swim close and ambush you, yes? You’re a real warrior, then? Have you seen many battles? Do you have scars? I have scars, but only because I was very young—”

“Limpet.” Theo stopped and took the selkie’s chin in his hand, holding his head still. “Whispering is not being quiet.”

“Right you are. Sorry. You have beautiful eyes.”

Theo dropped his hand and walked away, shaking his head. It was going to be long night.

FaeBadgeTour Dates: 9/2/14

Tour Stops: Parker Williams, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Multitasking Mommas, Velvet Panic, Love Bytes, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Tara Lain, Amanda C. Stone, Hearts on Fire, Fallen Angel Reviews, Andrew Q. Gordon, Cate Ashwood, Regular Guys, Hot Romance, Gaylist Book Reviews, Romance the Night, Queer Town Abbey, Cathy Brockman Romances, Kimi-Chan, MM Good Book Reviews, Book Reviews, Rants, and Raves, Smoocher’s Voice, It’s Raining Men, Michael Mandrake

Contest: Rafflecopter Prize: E-copy of ‘No Fae Is An Island’. Use the Rafflecopter Link below to enter and for additional contest details.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

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