A Julia Review: Realm of Passion (Sexy Snax #114) by Courtney Breazile

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Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars

Irresistible magic in a tempting body.

Callie’s body is the perfect hiding place for the magic of the fairy realm. Malia is the perfect guard for her body against the demons determined to have the magic for themselves. Malia can’t resist the magic—it calls to her—and Callie’s body is as close as she can get to it. Surprised to find the body so welcoming, Malia refuses to give it up once she has it.

What can I say about Realm of Passion by Courtney Breazile? First of all, I have never read anything that felt so rushed before – be it short story, novella or novel. The storyline has enough content that you could and should fill at least twice as many pages with it. It is basically a plot worthy of an entire novel pushed into the format of a novella. Scenes that feel like they should be important for character and plot development are only given a quick mention consisting of no more than a couple of sentences. The lore is hastily explained and very standard for a fantasy story. Even though the end takes place in a completely different realm than ours, there is only just the faintest trace of world building and we learn hardly anything about the fairy realm or its inhabitants.

The characters are of course majorly suffering from the hasty writing as well. We get to learn next to nothing but the most superficial information about their personalities, relationships and motivations. They cannot respond to events with the proper amount of emotions or opinions since there is almost no time before jumping to the next scene. In the beginning, for example, Callie loses a patient on the operating table, goes to puke in the bathroom and is already contemplating on treating herself to dinner two paragraphs later – seemingly without any repercussions of just watching a woman die under her hands a few hours earlier! The reader is not nearly given enough time and exposition to become involved with the characters and their actions in any shape or form. Therefore, the characters feel empty and impersonal. The person, who is supposed to be the main villain, receives probably one and a half pages of appearance time in the end and the two supporting characters are apparently killed but it is only mentioned briefly afterwards and no one seems to care anyway.

The worst example for this lack of proper character development is Callie, the main protagonist, whose feelings and decisions make almost no sense whatsoever. She lives a normal life until she finds out that magic is real and demons are coming to hunt her down because she carries magic within her that is needed to save the fairy realm. Oh, and she can now shoot beams of light from her hands that incinerate people. Basically, within a chapter of learning all of this and being kidnapped, she can only seem to think of one thing: hot sex with her fairy kidnapper who, of course, also immediately lusts after Callie in return! The sex scenes are described in greater detail than any other more plot-relevant scenes. That said, while the first sex scene might still be semi-entertaining, the ones that follow are mainly just the same over and over again. When the two protagonists profess their love for each other, you cannot help but cringe and shake your head, since they have barely gotten to know each other at this point nor spent more than maybe two days in each other’s company.

The only reason I gave this novel 1.5 stars is because at least the basic idea for the plot and characters seemed interesting enough which makes it just all the sadder that the material was treated this way. This felt like it should have been the plot outline for a story rather than the actual finished book.

I did like the cover art by Posh Gosh with its comic-like style. However, a pretty cover cannot redeem a story lacking so severely in execution.

Sales Links:   Pride Publishing | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 47 pages

Published April 9, 2012

by Pride Publishing

ISBN: 978-0-85715-938-0

Edition Language: English

A MelanieM Recent Release Review: Sharp Shooter Tokyoite by Charlie Godwyne

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Rating: 2 stars out of 5

It’s 2035 and Kei is a half-Japanese, half-American asthmatic forced to relocate to Vancouver in order to breathe. Despite the difficulties that being in Japan entails, Kei goes back time and again to spend time with Taka, best friend and confidante, and help him hunt illegal pornographers. But no matter how badly Kei wishes they could be together permanently, life seems determined to keep them apart.

I was so looking forward to this story from reading the blurb.  It had so many things that intrigue me, a Japanese location with Japanese or half Japanese characters with unusual jobs, who exist in a dystopian world.  Unfortunately the execution just didn’t pan out.

For starters, the narrative comes out as muddied instead of clearly defined.  There is a weird intro about shooting a crow that really has nothing to do with the rest of the story, nothing about the world building is substantial other than the fact that there are  pornographers still  in existence (not a surprise) and that the air quality is bad, even worse if you have asthma.  How is this supposed to be a reach when it already exists now?  When there are people who need to wear masks in cities during yellow and red zone days? It happens around the world now from Arizona to China so to have this story located in 2035 makes little sense.

So already you have 2 marks against this story.  Then you get to the characters.  Kei and Taka, who have such a disjointed relationship that there is absolutely no chemistry between them and therefore no connection between them and the reader.  I really couldn’t figure out why they wanted to stay together.

The best part of this story?  The very last part which was cut short when the story ended.  That’s when the author should have picked up and run with it, that whole concept was great.  But no, that was the end of the story.  Oh well.

Cover artist:  Natasha Snow.  Neat cover, nice design.

Sales Link:   Less Than Three Press  | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 40 pages
Published April 26th 2017 by Less Than Three Press
ISBN139781620049860
Edition LanguageEnglish

Release Blitz – Laurent and the Beast by KA Merikan (excerpt and giveaway)

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Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK


Length: 135,000 words


Cover: Natasha Snow


Blurb

Nothing can stop true love. Not time. Not even the devil himself. 


1805. Laurent. Indentured servant. Desperate to escape a life that is falling apart.

2017. Beast. Kings of Hell Motorcycle Club vice president. His fists do the talking.

Beast has been disfigured in a fire, but he’s covered his skin with tattoos to make sure no one mistakes his scars for weakness. The accident not only hurt his body, but damaged his soul and self-esteem, so he’s wrapped himself in a tight cocoon of violence and mayhem where no one can reach him.

Until one night, when he finds a young man covered in blood in their clubhouse. Sweet, innocent, and as beautiful as an angel fallen from heaven, Laurent pulls on all of Beast’s heartstrings. Laurent is so lost in the world around him, and is such a tangled mystery, that Beast can’t help but let the man claw his way into the stone that is Beast’s heart.

In 1805, Laurent has no family, no means, and his eyesight is failing. To escape a life of poverty, he uses his beauty, but that only backfires and leads him to a catastrophe that changes his life forever. He takes one step into the abyss and is transported to the future, ready to fight for a life worth living.

What he doesn’t expect in his way is a brutal, gruff wall of tattooed muscle with a tender side that only Laurent is allowed to touch. And yet, if Laurent ever wants to earn his freedom, he might have to tear out the heart of the very man who took care of him when it mattered most.


Excerpt 

Hound’s alarmed growling was coming his way, along with whines, when he reached the right door and opened it, only to have the massive Rottweiler’s body rush past him and into the corridor. Beast expected his pet to rush toward the room where the accident happened just minutes ago but Hound looked back at Beast, as if signalling he wanted to be followed, and rushed the other way, stirring the worst of feelings in Beast.

Was there an intruder somewhere in the house? With the sheer size of the former asylum that has served as the Kings of Hell Clubhouse for the last fifteen years, it was easy to overlook things happening in the disused parts of the property. They once had a bunch of teenagers who came over wanting to spy on the orgy. That thankfully didn’t end in blood, and out of the whole mess they got Jake to join their ranks.

Beast wondered whether he shouldn’t go back to the armory and get himself a gun but ultimately decided against it. There would be police and emergency services coming for Davy, and he didn’t want to run around with a firearm, no matter how good their relationship with the local police was.

Hound moved as if he were following a clear trail, but Beast couldn’t smell anything apart from dust and dampness. They were leaving behind the shouting and even the sound of the ambulance approaching, and eventually entered a corridor so disused it had a thick layer of dust on the floor. Now even Beast could see faint footprints in the dust, and next to them, dark droplets that could be blood.

Hound smelled the traces, looked back and broke into a run, which had Beast following him with the worst of expectations as to what he would eventually find. His heart beat faster as they ran down the dark hallway.

The building was a labyrinth, and this far away from where they all lived and worked, it wasn’t even wired anymore, so he breathed in the smell of mildew and followed Hound through the darkness in hope he would not stumble.

Windows in the doorless rooms on both sides of the corridor were the only source of light, now delivering a faint red and blue glow of the approaching ambulance. For all Beast knew, this could have been a gothic castle, something out of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, with bloodthirsty monsters waiting for their next victim in one of the endless hallways, and yet he only ran faster, listening to the steady tap of Hound’s paws.

Without any hesitation whatsoever, Hound rushed inside one of the rooms and gave a growl so vicious something inside Beast mourned his decision not to take a gun with him. But no one shot at him when Hound let out a single bark. Beast pushed past the empty doorway, jumping over a fallen chair, only to see someone hiding in the shadows.

Judging by the long, wavy hair and small stature, Beast at first thought it was a woman, but then the person spoke with a distinctly male voice.

“I… I’m not certain where I am.” The stranger took half a step out of the shadow, and into the flashing light coming from outside. His accent was distinctly foreign. French maybe?

Beast took him in with a scowl. Blood covered the stranger’s face, hair, dripped from his chin, from the tips of his trembling fingers, and stained the outfit that looked as if he’d stolen it from the set of a costume drama. Knee-high boots, fitted pants, a vest worn under a tailcoat.

“What the fuck are you doing on our property, boy?” hissed Beast, watching the soft features of a very young man. “Whose blood is this?” he asked, still cautious. In his experience, a non-threatening presence could hide an adept fighter, so he was not taking any chances as he joined Hound in front of the stranger, who was so short in comparison to Beast’s own six foot five form that his red-stained head only reached Beast’s pecs.

The stranger backed away into the corner, whimpering in fear the moment Hound growled at him again and lowered his head, but Beast wasn’t having any of it and grabbed the boy’s arm. “Is the blood yours then? Someone attacked you? Where?” he asked, not hesitating to pat the intruder down, to make sure there were no weapons hiding under the fancy coat.

The boy tried to weasel out of his grip, but he didn’t seem adept at using force. “N-no. I don’t think it’s mine. I don’t know. Is this hell?”

Beast groaned, staring at the silly-looking young man, whose white shirt was completely drenched in red. Someone must have died to produce this much blood.

“You will explain yourself to King.”


 
 
Author Bio

 

K. A. Merikan is the pen name for Kat and Agnes Merikan, a team of writers, who are taken for sisters with surprising regularity. Kat’s the mean sergeant and survival specialist of the duo, never hesitating to kick Agnes’s ass when she’s slacking off. Her memory works like an easy-access catalogue, which allows her to keep up with both book details and social media. Also works as the emergency GPS. Agnes is the Merikan nitpicker, usually found busy with formatting and research. Her attention tends to be scattered, and despite pushing thirty, she needs to apply makeup to buy alcohol. Self-proclaimed queen of the roads.

They love the weird and wonderful, stepping out of the box, and bending stereotypes both in life and books. When you pick up a Merikan book, there’s one thing you can be sure of – it will be full of surprises.

 

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Love Free Books? Who Doesn’t? Love Jay Northcote? Combine the Two! Check it Out Here!

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Free promotion running this weekend

Hi folks
Hope you’re all well. I’m just letting you know that Like a Lover (Housemates #2) is free at Amazon this weekend: 28th – 30th of April. The offer is already live and ends Sunday.

Full details

Like a Lover (Housemates #2) is free to download at Amazon this weekend.

Although it is part of the Housemates series, this story can be read as a standalone.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B014O4TCMY
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B014O4TCMY
Universal Amazon link: http://mybook.to/likealover_jayn

Find the whole series here:

http://tinyurl.com/housemates-JayN

LikeaLover_EBOOKJosh has a plan: get through uni with a good degree and no debts. Focused on his goals, he’s working as an escort to pay his way. He enjoys the no-strings sex and doesn’t have the time or inclination for a relationship. Falling in love definitely isn’t part of the deal–especially not with a client.

When Rupert meets Josh in a bar, he’s smitten on sight. He’s never paid for sex before, but when Josh propositions him, he can’t resist. He should have known one night would never be enough. Luckily for him, he has an inheritance to support his addiction to Josh, because his job in IT wouldn’t cover the cost.

With each appointment the lines get increasingly blurred. Something is developing between them that feels more like a relationship than a business transaction, but they come from different worlds and to go from client-and-escort to lovers seems impossible. If they want a future together, Josh and Rupert have a lot to overcome.

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Have a great weekend!
Thanks 🙂
Jay