A Mika Review: Love Lies Bleeding by Remmy Duchene

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Rating: 3 star out of 5 stars

Love Lies Bleeding CoverWhen literature professor Anderson Williams arrives late to a father/son date to find his father dead, his world collapses around him. Now, not only is he mourning his father, but he’s scared for his life while trying to make sure his father’s face doesn’t become one of the thousands of cold cases in some dusty room. Then he meets NYPD officer, Leo Sung Kim, and he isn’t prepared for his body’s reaction to the cop. 

Leo Sung Kim’s seen horrible things as a cop. But the latest serial killer is worse than anything he’s encountered. To make things worse, he’s instantly in lust with Anderson which makes staying professional almost impossible. 

Even as Leo fights his emotions, the killer gets bolder. When the smoke clears, Leo could not only lose his heart but his life.

This actually wasn’t a mystery to me. I kind of figured out the “who dun it” right in the middle. It just made sense, no other person was interest or remotely interrogated. If you put aside the mystery. I kind of liked both guys being inexperienced with this level of passion with each other. Anderson was so focused on his career that he didn’t see Leo coming a mile away. Leo I think had settled in his mind that being a detective in a 2 bedroom apartment was all he was getting for the rest of his life.

These two met at the most inopportune time ever. It was hard seeing them fall in love with tragedy all around them. I think Anderson was very lucky to have Leo in his life fighting with him so he wouldn’t drown in despair. I think Leo needed Anderson in his life so he could see he actually did want the happy household and partnership. I do think it was cliché to pronounce they felt some sort of love about each other when one was sick in the hospital. I wish it could have been longer and I would have loved to see an epilogue about these two, and their respective best friends relationships as well.
Wilde City Press created this cover. Besides the flower which plays a major part in the story, I don’t really know who the guy is suppose to be. One guy is Asian, the other is African American. I think it would have looked better with both of those guys with the flower.

Sales Links:  Wilde City Press

Book Details:

ebook, 2nd Edition
Published November 18th 2014 by Wilde City (first published January 2009)
original titleThe Orchid Murders

Previously published at Silver Publishing in 2009

Review: Night Fall (Frostbite #2) by Jenna Byrnes

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Rating: 2.75 stars out of 5

Frostbite- Nightfall coverSouth Side Chicago Detective Cullen Ryder lives for his job after a drunk driver killed his lover, leaving Ryder alone and grieving.  In the past few weeks, the number of homicides has jumped dramatically.  Someone is killing the homeless and prostitutes, leaving them drained of blood in the streets and alleys where they were found.  The coroner laughingly suggests a vampire on the hunt but why are they drained of all their blood?

Vampire Ethan Harte has returned home to Chicago after the last city he visited got too hot to stay.  Even in winter the poor seedy side of Chicago is full of victims for a hunting vampire.  Than Ethan runs into his old high school friend, Cullen Ryder in a bar and things turn sexually and emotionally intense in just one night.

But Ryder is a Homicide Detective with 15 years of experience and he’s hunting a killer. A killer that just happens to be his old friend and newest love. Ethan knows it dangerous to stay in Chicago with Ryder on his trail but he wants just a little more time before he has  to leave.  If Ryder discovers who and what Ethan is, can their newfound love survive the discover and Ryder’s sense of duty?

I loved the premise of this story but found the author’s Night Fall lacking in quite a few ways.  Cullen Ryder is the better of the two characters.  He is a seasoned detective, still hurting over the death of his lover by a drunk driver.  Byrnes gives this character a back history that rounds out his persona while letting us into his every day life to see the respect he has garnered as a detective on the force.  Unfortunately as the story progresses the author seems to forget about the character she has created as Ryder changes and his character adjusts to accommodate her storyline.  Furthermore, her vampire, Ethan Harte enjoys being a predator while giving lip service (however, briefly) to the moment he was changed.  Statements from Ethan to Ryder like “This relationship is over when I say it is over”, and the unpleasant actions that follow serve to derail the story and any sort of romance the author had intended.

The ending was, in my opinion, so off putting that I have no intention of reading the followup story even though an excerpt is included at the end of Night Fall.  Unless you are a diehard fan of jenna Byrnes or must read every vampire story that comes along, I would give this a miss and head over to the other Frostbite tales instead.

Book Details:

ebook, 1st Edition, 52 pages
Published December 13th 2013 by Total-E-Bound Publishing (first published December 12th 2013)
ISBN 178184853X (ISBN13: 9781781848531)
edition language English
series Frostbite #2

The Frostbite Collection includes:

Gravedigger (Frostbite #1) by Aurelia T. Evans
Night Fall (Frostbite #2) by Jenna Byrnes
Succulent Dark (Frostbite #3) by D.J. Manly
The Study of Blood in Winter (Frostbite #4) by Catalina Dudka

Review: Wicked Solutions (Wicked’s Ways #1) by Havan Fellows

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Book Rating: 4.75 stars out of 5

Series Rating: 5  stars out of 5

Wicked Solutions coverWick Templeton is an ex cop, and a man with a plan.  Wick’s plan, as a private detective, is to take only the cases that interest him and only when he feels like making the effort. That’s what happens when an injury forces you to retire from the police force, you cop an attitude.  Although if anyone was asked, it was an attitude you always had.  When an ex boyfriend calls in need of his help, Wick decides a little wicked intervention is needed to protect the ex and solve the case.  What he doesn’t figure on is an enigma called Ned Harris.

Friend or foe? Criminal or cop?  Wick doesn’t know but he likes the way the man fills out his slacks.  But Ned the puzzle is going to have to wait because there is a crime to solve and Wick is the man to do it.

What a great story and a delicious new addiction! Havan Fellows has created an over the top private eye, Wick Templeton, in an action-packed adventure series guaranteed to bring a smile to your face as well as quite a few snorts as Wick moves through an investigation like a devil with guns, knives and sarcastic comments to spare.

In the first story of the series, Wicked Solutions, we are introduced to Wick Templeton, a man who lives his life on his own terms and no one else’s.  Here he is:

Wick Templeton had retired from the police force years ago when an injury to his left side kept a doctor from clearing him to do anything but paper pushing.

He wasn’t a paper pusher. He needed the action of the streets, his fingernails dirty to feel like he contributed. Otherwise he was mean as a bear, and not the type he preferred in his bed either.

So he made do with his own company, so he could do things his way and play by his rules. Technically he wasn’t a private investigator, though he did have his license, for legal purposes. No, he leaned more toward the title of problem solver, hence the name Wicked Solutions. Have a spouse cheating on you and require proof? Sure, he’d take the pics if his schedule permitted. Have an issue with an overly friendly person who pops up everywhere?

Wick would help out there also.

Here is a man in pure pulp fiction form and we love him for it.  Wick is smart, crafty, and dominant in every way.  Oh, and have I said sexy?  He is that too.  Wick has more layers to him than a puff pastry.  And it seems that the more Fellows reveals about him, the more we understand that what we are given is just the “tip of the iceberg” as far as his character goes.  And the mystery about Wick, and Ned, and all of the other people we meet is part of the delicious fun of this book and the series.

In each story, Wick is given a mystery to solve. In Wicked Solutions, it appears that an ex-boyfriend is being set up to take the fall for some illegal activities and needs Wick’s help to keep his job and prove his innocence.  While Wick is not eager at first to help, when he does agree, he will do so by all means, legal or not.  He has a small group of friends he trusts, including one who is an IT  wiz.  It’s such a giggle and a snort to watch as Wick goes about the business of offending and outsmarting all of those around him.  I just loved it.

Havan Fellows writing is so well done here.  The story flows smoothly, the dialog crisp and perfect for the characters, and the ending leaves one wanting more while still giving the mystery the resolution is deserves.  Just a great job all around.  There is an element of romance here but it builds slowly over the  next four books.  We see in this book only the interest between the men and the hint of what will follow.  It really works as a neat tease for the rest of the series.

At 43 pages, it is a quick read.  Far too short for my tastes because I just love this character.  But it works at 43 pages, a true complete story.  It also sets up the next book in the series, as does each book that follows.  I have to admit I read them all in one sitting, grabbing each up like a bonbon and devouring them.  You will want to as well.  But you must start with this one and get a feel for Wick and all the wonderful, snarky adventures to follow. I can’t recommend this character and this series highly enough.  You are going to love him too!

Wicked’s Ways series:

Wicked Solutions

Wicked Bindings

Wicked Incarceration

Wicked Guidance

Cover art by Laura Harner.  The design works to brand the series but I wish it had been a little more “pulp fiction” in design.

Book Details:

ebook, 43 pages
Published January 15th 2013 by Appleton Publishing Avenue
ISBN13 9781937252342
edition language English
series Wicked’s Ways