A Chaos Moondrawn Review: Mercs and Strippers (Ore 5 #3) by Meraki P. Lyhne

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5 

This is the third book in the series, and they should be read in order. This starts right where book two ends, with Ethan and Ryder running into Ethan’s father Gregor, who is the attorney hired by the Corporation to help stop the Mob from infiltrating Ore 5’s entertainment businesses. The only reason to know this happens in space, is because the reader is told it’s in space. There is nothing science fiction about this, except the one alien creature. I kept hoping, but it just never happened. The big secret about Uncle Bob and why Ryder came to Ore 5 is revealed, which immediately becomes a red flag for a plot twist that never materializes. Was it planned for another book that isn’t going to happen? I have no idea. It’s the perfect way for the mob to get revenge. However, this book really does have an ending that feels like the series is done. The story arc of Ethan finally getting the respect he deserves from his father is complete. The theme of Ethan letting go of the past to see how people really treat him, what they really think of him, has played out.

As suspected, Brutus’s character is a surprise twist…and I think this was really not plotted out from the beginning but added later, or there is just no foreshadowing. There is plenty of foreshadowing about everything else, so it seems odd. BTW, I had no idea Brutus is black until 77% of the way into this third book. I would have liked to have known that in the first book so I could have been picturing him properly. Brutus and Hayden’s story just isn’t given any time to grow. There is a convoluted message about Brutus not wanting to date Hayden while he is a client in need of protection, not wanting Hayden to feel like it’s a quid pro quo. Yet as soon as the Corporation is no longer paying Brutus to watch Hayden, how is it any different? Hayden has no money or any place to stay except with the man who is giving him a free place and promising to protect him. Brutus and Hayden talk about contracts and their relationship in front of Ryder, Tommy, and Ethan…but there wasn’t a scene where they talk about it themselves, until after that. They are all of the sudden in a relationship after having a few breakfasts together as soon as Brutus is no longer his bodyguard. I did like the message that saving Hayden isn’t enough, that they could help the others exploited by the mob. I also liked the message that saving them did not mean stopping them from being rent boys if they wanted to–that was their choice. Safe. Consensual. Legal.

I don’t think this is an ARC, since the book was already published, so it upset me that the writing declined: “It made for a sense of important belonging in Ryder’s life. Like it gave Ethan a spot that no one had ever been able to fill out in his life.” There are many sentences like this that have mistakes like verb tenses, typos, or just feel grammatically awkward. In fact, this book seemed really long, it dragged on and could have been much shorter and have told the same story without all the repetitive thoughts. There is a heavy hand in guiding the reader through Ethan working out his insecurities and how to think about each situation. I think book one had promise, and I liked book two. I think you can read book one and stop. If you read book two, you will have to read book three for the conclusion and I’m not sure it’s worth it. Even the sex scenes are not that exciting anymore, and much is made of Ryder spontaneously climaxing on stage while dancing. I think this book needed better editing and some rewrites before it was released. I am disappointed the series got weaker, rather than stronger at the end.

The cover art is by Angela Waters. I’ve liked all the covers in this series and they form a cohesive look for the series.

Sales Links: eXtasy Books Inc  | Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 306 pages
Published May 17th 2019 by eXtasy Books Inc
ASINB07RTWZ79D
SeriesOre 5 #3

A Chaos Moondrawn Review: Ledgers and Rent Boys (Ore 5 #2) by Meraki P. Lyhne

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 Rating: 4 stars out of 5 

This is book two in a series and they would be best read in order as this starts the day after the last book ends and has an overarching plotline. The bump in their relationship has passed with Ethan deciding to stay instead of returning to Earth. Although Ethan and Ryder are now a couple, with Ethan’s insecurities, he convinces Ryder not to let people know he’s off the market, saying it would hurt his business. They are now working together, neighbors, and lovers. The inventory issues, theft, and prostitution issues have gotten even more involved than they thought. It will take Ryder’s connections and Ethan’s accounting skills to save them from a hostile takeover by the Eastern European mob back on Terra.

For an erotic romance, I actually like the plot. I’d like to see more of it. I rarely say this, but I’d like less hot sex and sweet romance, and more of the politics and alien life featured. With the addition of some new characters, like the rentboy Hayden and Ryder’s friends from outside the club, this is starting to round out nicely. Hayden is integral to the story moving forward; I’m glad he’ll be in the next book as I became attached to him. Brutus, the bouncer, is more than he seemed, so I expect his character to continue to be expanded, but this was an unseen plot twist. I am left wondering if I missed some foreshadowing from the first book.

My favorite parts about this book are the same as in the first book: Ryder dancing, the discussions of the rule of law on Ore 5, the likeable secondary characters, and Ethan and Ryder together. My criticisms are the same also. What is with the Scyphoes–poisonous sea-life-like creatures? It is obvious Ethan is going to get stung at some point. This isn’t even a spoiler, just a foregone conclusion. But, is that the only reason for this alien lifeform to exist on this planet in this story? Because that is such a missed opportunity. The first book seemed like more of a complete story, while this is a go between…with a huge cliffhanger. That made me want to stab things. The author keeps throwing in plot twists and my concern is that this will turn into a longer soap opera than I personally have patience for. I’ll give book three a try because I want to see the conclusion of this story arc.

This cover art is by Angela Waters. I love all three of the covers (so far) in this series. They match, show key characters how I pictured them, and show a science fiction background. The colors remind me of cities at night or Las Vegas–places you expect neon signs to flash, which is very fitting for the setting.

Sales Links: eXtasy Books Inc  | Barnes & Noble  |  Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition, 242 pages
Published June 22nd 2018 by eXtasy Books Inc (first published June 15th 2018)
ASINB07DTBHCYL
Edition Language English
SeriesOre 5 #2

Enter the World of Fantasy with Meraki P. Lhyne’s ‘Anchored In Stone (excerpt and giveaway)

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Anchored In Stone (Chronicles of an Earned #1) by Meraki P. Lyhne
Release Date: November 1st, 2015

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Extasy Books
Cover Artist: Carmen Waters

Today I’m very lucky to be interviewing Meraki P. Lyhne author of Anchored in Stone.  Hi Meraki, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your current book.

Trivial stuff, sure. I’m a Danish woman at 36. I’m a mom, a wife, a coffeeholic. I’m a black smith by trade, but I switched out the hammer and anvil for a keyboard to make the constant run of a character stop. It didn’t work out as well as planned because that just made room for more. When I moved into MM I made up this Pseudonym. That’s what the P. stands for. I’ve been published in Denmark and a publisher there once told me that readers can relate two genres pr. Author name. MM is so far from what I’ve written so far, so I made up Meraki to write MM.

  • Give us an interesting fun fact or a few about your book or series:

Edward Watcher is inspired by my art teacher at school, and some of the scenes are inspired by that class. It’s the only time I’ve ever done that, but that teacher was phenomenal, and he deserved the honor.

  • How did you come up with the title of your book or series?

The title is something from the book. Either an object or a pivotal factor. The series title is because it’s a chronicles. The Earned are the demigods in this world, and even though Alex is the main character, then they’re closely connected. But Kaleb is the center, but not always the one focused upon as he evolves along with Alex. Hard to explain, because it has something to do with how the Earned function.

  • Have you ever given one of your characters the personality of someone you know?

Not a personality. The closest I’ve come was as described under the first question. Characters do what they like anyway. God isn’t the only one laughing when man plans—characters laugh too, when authors plan. I’m sure of it!

  • What do you think makes a good story?

I’ve always been partial to the character development. I love action, too, but I think other than that, then the author’s ability to pace a story is just as important. Pacing the evolving world and character’s development is key.

  • What does your family think of your writing?

My hubby supports me. He’s my Atlas—he carries the real world on his shoulders while I make up new ones. He hasn’t read a whole lot of it, but he’s a hard working man. That I write MM is just something he smiles about. He does intend on reading them when the rebuild of the house is done.

My brothers and twin sister are supportive as well, and my parents are proud, too, but they don’t read my books because of one, a bad eyesight, and two, she’s not thrilled by the first series which was quite violent. Her opinions on homosexuality means she’ll definitely never read this series.Anchored in Stone dogs

I’ve had three dogs, two of which are alive and warming my feet under the desk. I have two cats, and two birds, too, so it’s a lively house. My first dog was an English Mastiff, and I’d really love a dog like that again! Right now I have Formel 1 yellow Labradors. It’s not always a good thing to have dogs as office pets. I mean, trying to keep focused when they rip off a stinker under the desk…I’ve had to vacate the premises for safety a few times in the middle of a scene.

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Blurb

The easiest heist in Alex Rhoden’s career is also the most dangerous of all.

As a child, Alex Rhoden’s talent as a thief was recognized by a rich art collector. He has since then been schooled and trained to become one of the best art thieves in the world. While on the easiest heist of his career he finds himself running with the artefact in his possession, followed by an unknown adversary. But they are not the only ones interested in the artefact—so is an ancient race of demigods called Earned. Cornered and out of options, Alex has to make a difficult decision that will turn his life upside down no matter what he chooses.

The young demigod, Kaleb, is reborn into servitude, but he is a freak amongst his own kind—the forbidden unity between an Earned and a witch. Other than finding himself, learning to control his powers, and balance high school as a senior, Kaleb must earn the trust of his pack and family. But Alex is in danger and the young demigod struggles to keep up.

 

Pages or Words: 373 pages, 106,985 words
Categories: Contemporary, Erotica, M/M Romance, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy

Excerpt

Alex made his way down the corridors, watching out for the guard. This one he found leafing through a magazine with his feet up and his back turned to the staircase. Alex stopped, breathed in deeply, and let it out slowly, reminding himself that a fat guard’s dumb luck was what caught his cat burglar mentor. No matter how carefully one builds a card house, a gust of wind can bring it all down.

So Alex took his time and focused all his expertise on getting past this guard as if he were from the agency itself. Finally in the basement, he made his way to the crate, pushed it open, and sought out the stone first. He found it and put it in a bag, which he in turn put in his thigh pocket, before stuffing another bag with whatever his pricey education had told him was worth the most on the black market.

Happy with his find, he turned, but something seemed to have a hold on the pocket with the stone in. He turned and found himself face to face with a big, mean-looking ghost. He gasped and clasped his left hand over his mouth to catch the scream he couldn’t stop, and clutched the stone with his right.

And then he ran. He didn’t even care if the guard saw him. He made it past the guard, who was nowhere in sight, and exited through the service entrance.

Alex didn’t stop until his body threatened to vomit out his heart. He stopped and by sheer exhaustion, his body chose to empty his stomach anyway. He took the stone out and stared at it. It felt almost as if fine electricity danced between it and where it touched his skin.

“What the hell did you have me steal, Mr. Henry?”

Buy the book:  Amazon | eXtasy

 

Meet the Author:

Meraki P. Lyhne is a Danish author with a love for the paranormal and space opera. She has been writing space opera since 2007, but paranormal erotic romance is a newer love. Closing the door to her writing-den, she delves into elaborate stories and research ancient religions, mythologies, and arts of the world to be inspired, so she can create new creatures of the paranormal.

Where to find the author:


BannerTemplateTour Dates & Stops:

11-Jan: The Hat Party, MM Good Book Reviews, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

18-Jan: Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Molly Lolly, Happily Ever Chapter

25-Jan: Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, Wake Up Your Wild Side, Love Bytes

1-Feb: Book Lovers 4Ever, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

8-Feb: A.M. Leibowitz, Cheekypee Reads and Reviews, BFD Book Blog

15-Feb: Boys on the Brink Reviews, Inked Rainbow Reads, Alpha Book Club

22-Feb: Prism Book Alliance, Divine Magazine, Bayou Book Junkie

29-Feb: Multitasking Mommas, Velvet Panic, Havan Fellows

Final

Giveaway

Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: PDF copy of ‘Anchored in Stone’ by Meraki P. Lhyne. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.
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