A Free Dreamer Review: The Musician and the Monster by Jenya Keefe

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Hatred is a spell only true love can break.

Ángel Cruz is a dedicated session musician, until loyalty to his estranged family forces him to work for Oberon: the feared and hated envoy from the Otherworld. Overnight, Ángel is taken from his life, his friends, his work, and trapped in a hideous mansion in the middle of nowhere, under constant surveillance, and with only the frightening fae for company.

Oberon’s poor understanding of humans combined with Ángel’s resentment and loneliness threaten to cause real harm to the pair. Then a long winter together in the mansion unites them in their love of music. Slowly, Ángel’s anger thaws, and he begins to realize that Oberon feels alone too.

Gradually, these two souls from different worlds form a connection like none other. But hate and prejudice are powerful things, and it’ll take all the magic of their love to stop the wider world from forcing them apart.

I love a good story involving the fae and “ The Musician and the Monster” promised to be a new take on them. And I have to say, I quite enjoyed it.

I will admit it took a little till I fully connected to the story. It was a little slow in the beginning and I struggled to understand Oberon. I really think his POV would’ve made it much easier to understand him. He might not look all that different from your average human, but he doesn’t act like a human at all. I guess that would have also made it hard to write his voice, but I have seen this done successfully before.

After a while, it did click and I started to really enjoy the book. Once Ángel, and we, slowly get to know Oberon, the fae turns out to be a really interesting person. The author does a pretty good job at making him more accessible to the reader and I really liked him. I would have loved to learn a little more about the world of the fae, though.

The pace is rather slow and there’s not that much action, other than one big bang toward the end. I think the pace fit the story, even if it didn’t create any suspense in the traditional sense of the word. But I did find it harder to put down the book the further along I got.

I especially liked the end and I’d love to see a sequel. It felt like such a wonderful new beginning for everybody involved.

Overall, “The Musician and the Monster” is a good, enjoyable book that keeps getting better and better the more you read. I do think Oberon’s POV would have helped push it more towards “great” instead of just “good”. Still, if there is a sequel at some point, I will most definitely read it.

If you like quiet Urban Fantasy with a very slow burn, then you should give this one a try. If you want a fast-paced, suspense filled story full of action and magic, then this probably isn’t the book for you.

The cover by Shayne Leighton is gorgeous and fits the story perfectly.

Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing | Amazon

 

Book details:

ebook, 300 pages

Published September 30th 2019 by Riptide Publishing

A MelanieM Audio Review:The Rising (Badlands #2) by Morgan Brice and Kale Williams (Narrator)

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Rating: 4.75 stars out of 5

A big storm is brewing, there’s a killer on the loose, and the ghosts of Myrtle Beach are restless. Psychic medium Simon Kincaide and his sexy cop boyfriend, homicide detective Vic D’Amato, have their hands full helping the Grand Strand brace for rough surf, driving rain, and high winds as a winter storm roars toward shore.

Everyone’s on edge, and rumors are rampant about sightings of Blackcoat Benny, a ghostly omen of danger, and worse, the Gallows Nine, the spirits of nine infamous criminals hanged back in the 1700s, a harbinger of disaster. Rough tides wash the wreck of an old pirate ship into shallow waters, high winds threaten to damage an old mansion with a dark past, and the citizens of the beach town hunker down to ride out the storm.

As the skies grow dark and the sea turns wild, several men from prominent local families end up dead under suspicious circumstances. Simon’s premonition confirms Vic’s gut feeling – the killing is just getting started. As Simon tries to reach out to the spirits of the murdered men to help the investigation, he’s attacked by malicious ghosts that don’t want anyone getting in the way of their long-overdue vengeance.

When I first started listening to audiobooks, if you had asked me if I would be listening to stories I had already read, I would have said no..  But as my appreciation for this format and the gifted narrators has grown, I find I not only find myself listening to stories I have  already read bit actovey seek out the audio versions.  Why?  Because I have long since learned that a superb narration  not only sometimes elevates the story past my previous experience, maybe because of distractions or moods or what have you. But because that narrator’s voice and acting ability allows me to see into the characters and stories in ways I hadn’t seen before.

Love it when I am able to discover new facets to characters or pickup on new clues overlooks because I missed a sentence reading it.  Can’t do that while listening.

So it happens here with the marvelous audio version of The Rising (Badlands #2) by Morgan Brice as narrated by Kale Williams.  I’m more than thrilled with the seamless combination of author and narrator, the same one, Kale Williams who is the voice behind Morgan Brice’s other audio series.  I’m dropped into the still new relationship of Simon and  Vic as they settle in together into their lives in Myrtle Beach.  But there’s a huge storm brewing, and the atmosphere is heavy, as only that ominous way that foretells danger and foreboding.

Such an excellent story.  As with all such plots there is murder which bring’s in Vic, and the methodology and strange circumstances which brings in Simon, each in their area of expertise.  This is one of power, and haunting, and pirates.  And while I remembered it all so clearly.  Now, well, now, as voiced by Williams, this story sang of mystical powers and a need for revenge that even death couldn’t quench!  I couldn’t stop listening, hooked by story, hooked by voice.  it was as though it was new all over again.

I love how we start off pointed in all directions, yet all layers, the past, the present, and yes, even the future, come together when all the clues mesh with a crescendo to a chilling, thrilling, heart stopping ending! The Rising is truly one of my favorite stories with one of Brice’s favorite couples (and that’s saying a lot)!  It has it all.  Romance! Mystery! Suspense! The Mystical and Paranormal.  And even Pirates with revenge on the mind.  You can’t ask for more.  But you get it with Kale Williams as the outstanding narrator.  Don’t miss out on this superb series ! The audio version rocks!

Cover art is dark and the models work for the characters but I wish for a tad more elements from the storyline.

Buy Links

Audible US  |  Audible UK 

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

Audio Book Details:

Listening Length: 6 hours and 48 minutes.

Audible Audio, 7 pages
Published June 18th 2019 by Tantor Audio (first published February 13th 2019)
ASIN B07SLGN28Y
Edition Language English
Series Badlands #2

Badlands Series linked to GR

Badlands

Lucky Town 1.5

Restless Nights 1.6

The Rising 2

Cover Me: A Badlands Short 2.5

Love to Listen to Your Stories? Check Out the Review Tour for The Rising (Badlands #2) by Morgan Brice and Kale Williams (Narrator)

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AUDIOBOOK REVIEW TOUR

Book Title: The Rising (Badlands #2)

Author: Morgan Brice

Publisher: Darkwind Press

Narrator: Kale Williams

Release Date: June 18, 2019

Genre: Urban Fantasy, MM paranormal romance

Trope/s: Second chance, new established relationship, monster hunting, hurt/comfort

Themes: Learning to trust, growing into a relationship, partnership

Heat Rating: 4 flames

Length: 6 hours and 48 minutes

It can be read on its own, but it is part of the Badlands series

Add on Goodreads

 

Vic and Simon race to stop the murders against an unholy deadline, but as they battle rising tides and risen ghosts, can they save the intended victims without getting trapped themselves? 

 

Blurb 

A big storm is brewing, there’s a killer on the loose, and the ghosts of Myrtle Beach are restless. Psychic medium Simon Kincaide and his sexy cop boyfriend, homicide detective Vic D’Amato have their hands full helping the Grand Strand brace for rough surf, driving rain, and high winds as a winter storm roars toward shore. 

Everyone’s on edge, and rumors are rampant about sightings of Blackcoat Benny, a ghostly omen of danger, and worse, the Gallows Nine, the spirits of nine infamous criminals hanged back in the 1700s, a harbinger of disaster. Rough tides wash the wreck of an old pirate ship into shallow waters, high winds threaten to damage an old mansion with a dark past, and the citizens of the beach town hunker down to ride out the storm. 

As the skies grow dark and the sea turns wild, several men from prominent local families end up dead under suspicious circumstances. Simon’s premonition confirms Vic’s gut feeling—the killing is just getting started. As Simon tries to reach out to the spirits of the murdered men to help the investigation, he’s attacked by malicious ghosts that don’t want anyone getting in the way of their long-overdue vengeance. 

With the storm hammering the coast, and new victims piling up, Simon is certain that the sins and secrets of the past are coming due, and that the murders have a supernatural link. Vic and Simon race to stop the murders against an unholy deadline, but as they battle rising tides and risen ghosts, can they save the intended victims without getting trapped themselves? 

The Rising is the second novel in the Badlands series. It is a MM romance intended for readers 18 years of age and older. The story contains mentions of suicide (not the main characters).

 

Buy Links

Audible US  |  Audible UK 

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

 

About the Author 

Morgan Brice is the romance pen name of bestselling author Gail Z. Martin. Morgan writes urban fantasy male/male paranormal romance, with plenty of action, adventure and supernatural thrills to go with the happily ever after. Gail writes epic fantasy and urban fantasy, and together with co-author hubby Larry N. Martin, steampunk and comedic horror, all of which have less romance, more explosions. Characters from her Gail books make frequent appearances in secondary roles in her Morgan books, and vice versa.

Other books include Witchbane, Burn, Dark Rivers, and Badlands, Lucky Town, and The Rising, plus Treasure Trail. Watch for more in these series, plus new series coming soon!

I’ll be a Featured Author at GRL in October and also at Coastal Magic in February!

Join my Worlds of Morgan Brice Facebook Group! Get the early scoop on upcoming books and new series, see new covers first, enjoy insider news and special contests and giveaways! Plus it’s where I get my beta readers and launch team!

 

Author Links

Amazon

Facebook Group

Pinterest (for Morgan and Gail)

Twitter: @MorganBriceBook

Website

BookBub

Sign up for my newsletter and never miss a new release

 

 

Follow the tour and check out the other blog posts and reviews here

 

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Enjoy a Little Bit of Mystery and Suspense with your Romance? Check Out the Blog Tour for Raven’s Hart (Haven Hart #7) by Davidson King (excerpt and giveaway)

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Raven's Hart Tour Banner

Raven’s Hart

Haven Hart Series Book 7

Davidson King

M/M, Gay Romance, Suspense, Mystery

Release Date: 09.15.19

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BLURB

Haven Hart stands on the edge of good and evil. Having balance between the two is the only thing keeping the town from crumbling to the ground. For years, one man has been charged with maintaining that balance. Poe.

The air of mystery surrounding Poe is one of necessity. He’s the keeper of secrets and for good reason. He’s stood alone against the most ruthless men and women, always hiding behind the curtain to help his friends defeat what seeks to destroy them.

Now, after all this time, the city he loves, the people he has protected, and the secrets he’s kept hidden are in serious jeopardy. Poe will need the help of his friends to fight the ultimate battle; not just save Haven Hart but everything and everyone he holds dear to him.

When the dust settles, will betrayals be forgiven? Will the city still be standing? Will Poe’s beloved be at his side or will everything crumble? One thing is for certain, everything will be tested, and questions will finally be answered. Raven’s Hart is the final installment in the Haven Hart Series.

***IMPORTANT***

This is the 7th book in the Haven Hart Series it is NOT a standalone and all others need to be read before this one.

UNIVERSAL LINK: mybook.to/RavensHart

RH Teaser1

EXCERPT

A light tap caught my attention, and I looked up to see Tony and Snow standing there. Snow, ever his curious self, was looking up, down, and around, absorbing it all, never to forget.

“Thank you, Tony, I’d like to speak with Snow alone, and then perhaps, if he has further questions pertaining to security and what you know, the two of you can talk later.”

“Okay, holler if you need me.” He smiled at Snow who nodded, and then left the room.

It wasn’t so much an uncomfortable silence as it was worrisome. Snow wasn’t a quiet person. He spoke up for everything he believed in, and on many occasions, gave me a good tongue lashing. To see him walking through my office and not making eye contact with me was jarring.

“Snow?” He jumped when I spoke but turned my way. “Would you like a drink?”

He chuckled, but it held very little humor. “What’s the strongest thing you’ve got?”

Ahh, so he was having trouble with all this. Understandable. I walked over to the small cart with some beverages and poured us each a Jack and ginger ale. I knew he didn’t like drinking because of his father, but he wasn’t kidding that he wanted a drink.

“Thanks,” he said as he took the drink and sipped it. “So, this is really weird.”

I couldn’t argue with that. “Did you read my note?”

He rolled his eyes at my obviously stupid question. “I wouldn’t be here if I hadn’t. You have Jason Momoa over there come to my house, tell me he can’t say much but to read this thing and to follow him. You’re lucky Christopher wasn’t home, or Bill for that matter, or I wouldn’t have been able to sweet talk Donny into trusting my life choices and going with Aquaman.”

Davidson-King-Logo-Main PNG

Davidson King, always had a hope that someday her daydreams would become real-life stories. As a child, you would often find her in her own world, thinking up the most insane situations. It may have taken her awhile, but she made her dream come true with her first published work, Snow Falling.

When she’s not writing you can find her blogging away on Diverse Reader, her review and promotional site. She managed to wrangle herself a husband who matched her crazy and they hatched three wonderful children.

If you were to ask her what gave her the courage to finally publish, she’d tell you it was her amazing family and friends. Support is vital in all things and when you’re afraid of your dreams, it will be your cheering section that will lift you up.

LinkTree to ALL links: https://linktr.ee/davidsonkingauthor

Giveaway

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In the Spotlight Tour and Giveaway: The Musician and the Monster by Jenya Keefe

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The Musician and the Monster by Jenya Keefe

Riptide Publishing

Cover Art: Shayne Leighton

Sales Links:  Riptide Publishing | Amazon

About the Book

Hatred is a spell only true love can break.

Ángel Cruz is a dedicated session musician, until loyalty to his estranged family forces him to work for Oberon: the feared and hated envoy from the Otherworld. Overnight, Ángel is taken from his life, his friends, his work, and trapped in a hideous mansion in the middle of nowhere, under constant surveillance, and with only the frightening fae for company.

Oberon’s poor understanding of humans combined with Ángel’s resentment and loneliness threaten to cause real harm to the pair. Then a long winter together in the mansion unites them in their love of music. Slowly, Ángel’s anger thaws, and he begins to realize that Oberon feels alone too.

Gradually, these two souls from different worlds form a connection like none other. But hate and prejudice are powerful things, and it’ll take all the magic of their love to stop the wider world from forcing them apart.

Now available from Riptide Publishing!

About the Author

Jenya Keefe was born in the South. She has an advanced degree in European history, and has spent much of her life working the kinds of jobs a history degree qualifies you for: gift shop employee, lumber grader, classifieds clerk, hot glass artist. She currently lives in the Seattle area, where she works at a library. She has always written stories.

Website: www.jenyakeefe.com

Twitter: @JenyaKeefe

Giveaway

To celebrate this release, Jenya is giving away a $15 gift card to Powell’s City of Books! Powell’s is an independent bookseller located in Portland, but those not in Portland can still shop online. Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on October 4, 2019. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following along, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!