A MelanieM Review: Hammer of the Witch (Repeating History #2) by Dakota Chase

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Rating: 5 stars ot of 5

Repeating History: Book Two

History isn’t dead when you’re living it.

Ash and Grant are about to learn why it was called the Dark Ages, when Merlin, in the guise of their teacher, once again sends them time traveling to reclaim one of the antiquities their prank destroyed: a book called the Malleus Maleficarum, or Hammer of the Witches, which was used to persecute and kill innocent people throughout medieval Europe.

They’ll need to keep their heads down and their wits about them in a Germany ruled by the iron fist of the Inquisition, where anyone who is different is dragged off to horrifying prisons, tortured to confession, and ultimately killed in the worst way imaginable. But it won’t be easy to navigate a frightening and brutal time, secure Merlin’s book, and make it home without attracting attention.

After having successfully procured the Eye of Ra from its source, the boy Pharaoh Tut, in ancient Egypt, it now time for their next retrieval.  Something far more malevolent.  And their experiences will be far different from the luxury and ease into society they had with Tut.

No, with  Hammer of the Witch, Dakota Chase has Merlin sends our rambunctious duo back to medieval times and witch hunts.  The item they seek for Merlin?  The book a means for identifying and punishing witches.  Instead of perfumed and painted people on the Nile, Chase gives us the harsh reality of the times in medieval Germany.  The plague, the unsanitary conditions, the indentured poor whose servitude gets longer due to the dubious circumstances under which they work…its all there.  Add to that the greed of the landowners combined with the religious fervor of Inquisition…and no one is safe from the cry of “witch”.

This is what Ash and Grant face as they travel back to Germany to search out and steal the Malleus Maleficarum, or Hammer of the Witches.  Chase once again unforgettably brings these times alive for the boys and us.  The reality  of the clothes (a shock to them both) and the fear the strangers are met with.  Worse yet, the burning bodies that greet them in the square once they get to the city.  Yes, this a grittier story, the harsh reality of the witch hunts hits an emotional punch right to the heart with each victim (young and old) declared guilty of witchcraft.

Again the question arises, how much of history, if any, can they change?

The writing is so well done, the era so well researched, that I was one hundred percent emotionally invested in that question along with Ash and Grant.  I felt for these people living under these heinous conditions, waiting for their loved ones to be hauled away  at any moment to be burned alive at the stake.

Hammer of the Witch is an emotional, intelligent adventure.  Thrilling, somber, and one hell of a story for Ash, Grant, and the reader.  And it ends as it should with not all of our questions answered, just the big ones.

I love this series and can’t wait for Mammouth.  What are the boys going to do with the I wonder?  And yes, I highly recommend this and the first story as well.  Read them in the order they are written.

Cover Artist: Tiferet Design.  I love these covers for this story and the series.  They have an old time design feel about them that you might have seen on the old boy adventure novels.  Yet there’s movement in the art work, along with a chilling feel with the color tone.  Marvelous.

Sales Links:  Harmony Ink Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 180 pages
Published January 9th 2018 by Harmony Ink Press
Original TitleHammer of the Witch
ISBN139781640800953
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesRepeating History:

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Release Day Review: Blood and Eternity (Blood #3) by Shira Anthony

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

This series requires focus, focus, focus. And a recap of the first two books. Fortunately, the author not only provides a cast of characters, she also provides the recap. Thank you, Ms. Anthony!

A sweeping, epic saga, worthy of the big screen, this is the story of Adrien Gilbert, a Hunter, and the love of his life—all of his lives!—Nicholas/Nico Lambert.

The villainous cast of characters is headed by Verel Pelletier, Adrien and Nicholas’s archenemy, the man behind all the complexity, intrigue, murder and mayhem spanning centuries. Adrien’s “demon,” the alter-ego voice in his head, is present throughout the story. And we finally see Adrien come to terms with the demon, master it, and use it to help him and Nico alter the course of multiple lives by going back in time to prevent the original disaster from happening.

The author follows the threads of the time streams introduced in the previous books to entice us with possibilities of what would happen if… But the reality becomes something different as the men land in 2018 and both are experiencing partial memories of the times before—despite the seeming impossibility of that happening.

It’s a definite brain-teaser, for sure. I must admit I struggled to stay on track for the early part of the story, especially since it’s been three years since the last book was released. With the author’s help by throwing out key tidbits to jog our memory and by having the explanations in the forward of the book, I slowly started to get re-involved with these men. I must say, of all the timelines and characters covered, I was most intrigued by the 2018 versions of Nico and Adrien and by their selfless devotion to risk all they had to right the wrongs set in motion by Pelletier, even if it meant they might not be together by the time their previous souls reached 2018.

As I said early in the review, focus is the key. By the end of the book, that’s not as much of an issue because at that point I was so focused on the action that I let all else in my life fall by the wayside—the hallmark of an outstanding book, in my opinion.

Those who love an epic romance, vampires, immortals, and more will likely fall as much in love with this series as I have. I very highly recommend this book and the whole series to all lovers of MM romance. And now that all three books are out, I definitely recommend sticking to short timeframes between each story. That will most definitely be a huge aid to following this saga.

~~~

The cover by Reese Dante is a close-up shot of Adrian, a beautiful man with fascinating pale blue eyes. In a way, it’s good that Nicholas is not featured on this cover as he is on the others since book three gives Adrien, and his demon, the principal role.

Sales Links:   Dreamspinner Press | Amazon

Book Details:

ebook, 214 pages
Expected publication: July 31st 2018 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN139781640807426
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesBlood #3

An Ali Audiobook Review: Suspicious Behavior (Bad Behavior #2) by L.A. Witt and Cari Z. with Michael Ferraiuolo (Narrator)

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Detective Darren Corliss is hanging by a thread. In between recovering from a near-fatal wound and returning to work at a hostile precinct, he’s struggling to help care for his ailing brother. His partner and boyfriend, Detective Andreas Ruffner, wants to help, but doesn’t know how. And with his own family crises brewing, Andreas is spread almost as thin as Darren.

For cops, though, life takes a backseat to the job. When a stack of unsolved homicides drops into their laps, Andreas and Darren think they’re unrelated cold cases. But when a connection surfaces, they find themselves on the tail of a prolific serial killer who’s about to strike again.

Except they’ve got nothing. No leads. No suspects. Just a pile of circumstantial evidence and a whole lot of hunches. Time is running out to stop the next murder—and to pull themselves back from their breaking points.

I enjoyed this one. In this installment we find Darren and Andreas a few months down the road. Darren is still recovering from his injuries from book one so the guys are working on cold cases. They come across some cases that they realize show the pattern of a serial killer.

This had an interesting case and I thought that aspect was entertaining and well done.  I like how they took the cold case and turned it into an exciting and action packed case.

My favorite part of this book though was the development between the two MC’s. Their relationship was still tentative by the end of the first book but I really started feeling their connection in this one. They have some great scenes together. They’re both complex characters with some pretty serious family issues.  The scenes between Darren and his brother Archer are just heartbreaking.
This audiobook was narrated by Michael Ferraiuolo and I thought he did a really good job.  His performance really added to the vibe and feeling of the story.  It made the emotional scenes between the two main characters even more impacting.  I enjoyed both of the main character’s voices as well as all of the side characters.
Overall this was a really good read/listen.  This is the second book in the series and I do not recommend it as a standalone.  If you’ve read book one I think you will enjoy this.  If you haven’t and you’re looking for a new series to start this would be a good one
Cover Artist: will be updated once the  RT site is back up.
Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing’s link is unavailable atm | Amazon | Audible
Audiobook Details:
Audible Audio, 8 pages
Published July 2nd 2018 by Riptide Publishing (first published August 19th 2017)
Original TitleSuspicious Behavior
ASINB07F2MDKXT
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesBad Behavior #2

Blog Tour for Imperial Stout by Layla Reyne (teaser and giveaway)

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Imperial Stout by Layla Reyne

Series: Trouble Brewing #1

Publisher: Carina Press

Release Date (Print & Ebook): Ebook/Audio – July 23, 2018; Print – July 31, 2019

Length (Print & Ebook): 272 pages

Subgenre: M/M Romantic Suspense

To order:

AMZ: https://amzn.to/2qBqID7

UBL: http://books2read.com/u/mBMWMZ

Carina: http://bit.ly/2JQWIOF

Book blurb:

Layla Reyne spins off from her pulse-pounding Agents Irish and Whiskey books with Imperial Stout, the first installment in the Trouble Brewing series

It’s a good thing assistant US attorney Dominic Price co-owns a brewery. He could use a cold one. Nic’s star witness has just been kidnapped, his joint operation with the FBI is in jeopardy, his father’s shady past is catching up with him and the hot new special agent in San Francisco is the kind of distraction best handled with a stiff drink.

Kidnap and rescue expert Cameron Byrne has his own ideas about how to handle Nic, but his skills are currently needed elsewhere. The by-the-book FBI agent goes deep undercover as a member of an infamous heist crew in order to save Nic’s witness, break up the crew and close the case before anyone else gets hurt. Nic in particular.

Things heat up when Cam falls for Nic, and the witness falls for Cam. As the crew’s suspicions grow, Cam must decide how far he’s willing to go—and how far into his own dark past he’s willing to dive—to get everyone out alive.

Teaser Excerpt :

Nic was silent a long minute, the building tension heavy in the small space. “This is why you’re not supposed to get involved with colleagues.”

Finally, an opening. Cam closed the distance between them, winding his arms around Nic and hugging him from behind. Body warm, despite the cool night, Cam wanted to get even closer to it. They might both get burned, but he was done watching the fire from a distance, holding himself back from the heat.

“Technically, we’re not,” he said.

“You have an answer for everything, don’t you?”

“If it wins the argument with you, yes.”

Nic chuckled, hanging his head, and Cam skirted his nose and lips along the nape of his neck. Nic’s quiet laughter died on a breathy gasp.

About Layla Reyne:

Author Layla Reyne was raised in North Carolina and now calls San Francisco home. She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline-fueled suspense and heart pounding romance. When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs. Layla is a member of Romance Writers of America and its Kiss of Death and Rainbow Romance Writers chapters. She was a 2016 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist in Romantic Suspense.

Connect with Layla:

Connect with Layla Reyne: Twitter | Instagram | FB Page | FB Group | Newsletter | Goodreads | Pinterest | Amazon | BookBub

Giveaway:

Win a signed set of paperbacks from Layla Reyne: Imperial Stout and Blended Whiskey!

Winners in the USA will receive paperback copies of the prizes; winners from outside the contiguous USA, will receive Amazon gift card of equivalent value. Enter here:

 

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Blog Post for DJ Jamison’s Hearts & Health Volume 2 (giveaway)

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Three Romances in one set

Hearts and Health: Volume 2 (a box set of Books 4-6 in the series) is out now, so I thought it’d be fun to give you an overview of the three couples getting their HEA in this bundle!

WADE & BEAU: In Room for Recovery, Wade is keeping a secret that’s poisoning him inside, and until he can face it, he can’t accept himself or his love for anyone else. When Beau is threatened by bullies, though, Wade can’t keep his distance. The two forge a friendship, and soon enough, Beau is finding a way past Wade’s walls to the heart he keeps so well-hidden. This book has younger characters (eighteen and nineteen) than most of the others in the series. Wade and Beau both appeared briefly in Urgent Care, Book 3 in the series, but the story still works as a standalone.

ERIC & CASPER: In Surprise Delivery, Dr. Eric Holtz, a divorced workaholic, gets his happy ending. When Eric’s niece shows up, pregnant and ready to raise her baby without her parents’ help, Eric has family again. Her ob-gyn, Dr. Casper Rollins, is ready to help Eric break those nasty work habits as he prepares for this massive life change. But Eric discovers that Casper isn’t the light-hearted adrenaline junkie he appears to be. Reluctant to give his heart after the death of his past love, Casper needs his own lesson in living life to the fullest, and Eric is there to provide it.

IAN & CALLUM: Ian, a hospital orderly, appears briefly in Bedside Manner, but it’s his appearance in Surprise Delivery — when he inadvertently walks in on some hot man-on-man action — that serves as the catalyst for his sexual journey. Ian, divorced and the father of a teen, has long suppressed his bisexual side, but his curiosity drives him to install an app and hook up with a nearby user. Geeky lab tech Callum Price happens to be in the building and is all too happy to help Ian explore his sexuality. This is a hookups to lovers story, layered with the obstacles that come with family obligations and expectations. But rest assured, these two men will get their HEA!

The Hearts and Health series focuses on a new couple with each book, and for the most part, each book can stand on its own. If you haven’t yet read earlier books, there’s a box set of Books 1-3 out on Amazon, as well.

July 26 The Novel Approach, July 30Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, August 1Gay Book Reviews, August 2 Joyfully Jay, August 3Bayou Book Junkie

 

Buy Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK
 
Length: 220,000 words approx.
 
Blurb
 

Room For Recovery – Book #4


When Beau James is cornered by two bullies, he’s rescued by none other than the broody Wade Ritter, who he’s crushed on from afar. Despite their family connection, Wade has resisted all of Beau’s attempts at friendship — until now. His protective streak gives Beau an opportunity to get past Wade’s prickly exterior. But Wade is carrying a heavy burden that makes it tough to open up. With Beau’s help, he realizes there’s room for recovery. If he can face hard truths about his sexuality and love himself, he might be able to love Beau too.


Surprise Delivery – Book #5


Dr. Casper Rollins knows how to have fun. The love of his life, Kage Myers, lived every moment to the fullest before he died. Now, Casper goes on adrenaline-soaked adventures when he wants to feel closer to his lost love. Dr. Eric Holtz is married to his work, so much so his last partner left him. When his niece arrives, pregnant and in need of an ally, he has family again. Then her obstetrician suggests breaking Eric of his workaholic tendencies, and a fun and sexy fling ensues. But it’s not long before feelings are in the mix. If these two want a future, they’ll have to embrace the lesson Kage taught Casper long ago: You only live once.


Orderly Affair – Book #6


When Ian Connolly installs a hookup app to explore his long-suppressed attraction to men, he doesn’t expect to connect with anyone he knows, especially not lab tech Callum Price. But from their first scorching encounter, he’s hooked. Callum hasn’t had the best luck with love, and he’s suffocating under a pile of responsibilities. But when he sees an opportunity to blow off steam with Ian, he takes it. If Ian can be honest with his family about loving a man, maybe Callum can admit his own truth: He wants a man he can count on, a man just like Ian.

Author Bio


DJ Jamison is the author of more than a dozen m/m romances, including the Ashe Sentinel series and the Hearts and Health series. She writes a variety of queer characters, from gay to bisexual to asexual, with a focus on telling love stories that are more about common ground than lust at first sight. DJ grew up in the Midwest in a working-class family, and those influences can be found in her writing through characters coping with real-life problems: money troubles, workplace drama, family conflicts and, of course, falling in love. DJ spent more than a decade in the newspaper industry before chasing her first dream to write fiction. She spent a lifetime reading before that, and continues to avidly devour her fellow authors’ books each night. She lives in Kansas with her husband, two sons, two fish and, regrettably, one snake.


Facebook Author Page
FB group
Mailing list!
Follow me on Twitter
Find me on Goodreads
Check out my Book Bub profile!

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Release Blitz for Dawn (Expedition 63::Book #3) by T.A. Creech (giveaway)

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Buys Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | JMS Books
 
Length: 31,400 words
 
Publisher: JMS Books
 
Expedition 63 Series
 
Book #1 – Dusk – Amazon US | Amazon UK | JMS Books
Book #2 – Dark – Amazon US | Amazon UK | JMS Books



Blurb


Sequel to Expedition 63 Book 2: Dark


Yakecen Sinohui can see the end in sight for the stranded crew of the Station. Each breath is a countdown until they’re able to return to Earth, until the poison clouds have cleared enough to leave. Though it’s a bad idea, Yakecen is drawn into the orbit of their resident biologist, Eli, someone who has kept Yakecen’s head in the game with his sunny presence.


The universe, however, has one last middle finger to give the weary crew.


Eli Palamo doesn’t object to Yakecen’s covert attention. He’s pined for his friend from the first moment they met, and isolation has strengthened their bond as the hardships forced them lean on each other completely. Yakecen is all he’s ever wanted. Nothing will be enough to tear them apart, if Eli has anything to say about it, not even Yakecen’s own demons. Definitely not the end of their disastrous mission and their fight for survival.

 

About the Author


I am a house-parent to a rambunctious small child and happily mated to an equally rambunctious military spouse. My adventures in writing began with fanfiction, and once I was hooked I never looked back.


While I’ve always tried to make my fanfiction unique, what I enjoy most about creating original work is the ability to delve into my stranger ideas without worrying about how I might apply them to someone else’s world and characters. With my own creations, I take pride in twisting familiar tropes into something new and unexpected.


When I write, it is with the intention that my stories will leave a lasting impression. I hope you enjoy the characters and the worlds I create, and that they help you to find a place to exist, for a while, outside of your own.


–T.A. Creech

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Cover Reveal – Loving A Warrior by Melanie Hansen – giveaway

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Pre-Order Links: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Carina
 
Length: 77,300 words approx.
 
Publisher: Carina Press
 
Blurb



BUD/S: six months of the most intense training there is. It’s survival of the toughest, and Matt Knytych is determined to come out the other side a navy SEAL.


Distraction is life or death. And just the sight of former marine Shane Hovland is enough to shake Matt’s concentration.


Shane came to BUD/S training ready to prove himself—again. Semper Fi is forever, but he needs a new start. Not this dangerous heat with a man he barely knows.


Everything they’ve ever wanted is riding on a thin, punishing line. And they’ll have to fight for more than just each other if they want to make it through intact.


After all, the only easy day was yesterday.


Author Bio


Melanie Hansen has spent time in Texas and Florida prisons…for work. She’s been in a room with a 17-year-old mass murderer who was also one of the most soft-spoken and polite teenagers she’s ever met. After a 13-year career as a court reporter, she can tell many stories both hilarious and heartbreaking.


She grew up with an Air Force dad, and ended up marrying a Navy man. After living and working all over the country, she hopes to bring these rich and varied life experiences to her stories about people finding love amidst real-life struggles.


Melanie left the stressful world of the courtroom behind and now enjoys a rewarding career transcribing for a deaf student. She currently lives in Arizona with her husband and two sons.

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