An Alisa Audiobook Review: Little Wolf (Beings in Love #4) by R. Cooper and Robert Nieman (Narrator)

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Rating:  3 stars out of 5

 

Little Wolf audiobookOn the run from his old-blood werewolf family, Tim Dirus finds himself in Wolf’s Paw, one of the last surviving refuges from the days when werewolves were hunted by humans and one of the last places Tim wants to be. Kept away from other wolves by his uncle, Tim knows almost nothing about his own kind except that alpha werewolves only want to control and dominate a scrawny wolf like him.

 

Tim isn’t in Wolf’s Paw an hour before he draws the attention of Sheriff Nathaniel Neri, the alphaest alpha in a town full of alphas. Powerful, intimidating, and the most beautiful wolf Tim has ever seen, Nathaniel makes Tim feel safe for reasons Tim doesn’t understand. For five years he’s lived on the run, in fear of his family and other wolves. Everything about Wolf’s Paw is contrary to what he thought he knew, and he is terrified. Fearing his mate will run, Sheriff Nathaniel must calm his little wolf and show him he’s more than a match for this big, bad alpha.

 

Tim has been running from his family for years, with the help of a friend he goes to Wolf’s Paw.  When he meets Nathaniel he does everything he can to push him away, but the sheriff is determined to keep Tim safe if not from others, but from himself.  They both slowly open up to the other, but both continue to misunderstand the other’s actions.

 

This was an interesting story.  As with other stories in the series the whole not being able to tell your mate who they are to you can get a bit aggravating.  Tim never learned about any of his instincts while being lock away at his uncle’s mansion and doesn’t know how to process and understand the feelings he is having. How they can take Tim pushing Nathaniel away when he doesn’t know as a rejection is hard to fathom.

 

Robert Nieman did a great job narrating this story.  He doesn’t change voices much when narrating, but this author’s style of writing didn’t need the break up between characters.

 

Cover art by Paul Richmond is perfect and follows the pattern for the series.

 

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner Press | Audible | Amazon | iTunes

 

Audiobook Details:

Audiobook, 18 hrs 55min
Published: May 2, 2016 (ebook first published May 8, 2015)
Edition Language: English

Series: A Being(s) In Love Story

Kate Steele is Back! Join Her As She Talks Writing and her New Release ‘Amended Soul (Mated Heart and Soul #2)’ (author guest blog, excerpt and giveaway)

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Amended Soul

Amended Soul (Mated Heart and Soul #2) by Kate Steele

Published by Loose id LLC
Cover Artist Valerie Tibbs

Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is so lucky to have Kate Steele here to talk about her return to writing and her new novel, Amended Soul.  Welcome, Kate, we are so happy to see a new story from you again.

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Hello Everyone! My name is Kate Steele and I’m going to talk to you about writing. Boring, right? Maybe? Still, when I was offered the opportunity to write a short blog piece for Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words I told myself it would be a good thing to do. Trouble is, I’m sitting here trying to think of something interesting and different to say. It’s not the easiest thing I’ve ever done, but with that in mind, let’s begin with something completely open and honest.

I do my best writing in the bathroom. Seriously. I’ve had more ideas and character conversations come to mind in the bathroom than any other place. And no, smarty-pants, not while I’m sitting on the john. Mostly when I’m in the shower. You have no idea how many times I’ve ended up lost in thought, soap in one hand, washcloth in the other, while entire scenes are playing in my head.

What I need is for someone to invent a waterproof tablet with keyboard or some such that I can stick to the shower wall with some of those plastic suction cups. I might end up radically pruney, but I’d have a darn good story going by the time I got through my shower.

Okay, then. Did that loosen everyone up? I hope so because frankly I would like to talk a bit about my experiences while writing my latest book, Amended Soul. I’m going to be quite honest here and tell you this was one of the most difficult books for me to write and not for reasons you might expect. I started and finished this book in 2011 or thereabouts and it was accepted for publication with the usual condition that whatever changes and edits were deemed necessary would be done. As always, I was totally okay with that until my editor and I knocked heads. By this time I had been writing pretty much everyday nonstop for the past six or seven years. I was close to burnout level and the conflict flipped the switch. I walked away leaving Amended Soul behind me.

Four years later and after many times thinking that I felt like writing again, I finally took the bull by the horns and did it. I unearthed Amended Soul, reread it and did major rewrites keeping in mind some of the suggested changes made by my editor. When it was done I was actually much happier with the new version, though some of those editor-suggested changes still bugged me. With the book once again done, I submitted the new version for publication. It was accepted and I was assigned an editor. A different editor, one who felt those unwanted changes I had made were unnecessary, and who suggested they should be removed.

You’d think I would have been happy, right? Wrong. To be told the changes I had unwillingly made and compromised my vision for, were no longer desired was, to put it mildly, a slap in the face. I had invested hours agonizing over and rewriting large sections of the book. And for what? Nothing. No reason at all. I was so shocked and disheartened that I came very close to scrapping the whole project and retreating once again into non-writing limbo.

Thing is, I really wanted to do this book and maybe those years I was away from writing made me see how precious it was to me, this being able to tell a story, and so I persevered and Amended Soul saw its release in March of 2016. It took five years and basically Amended Soul went through three incarnations. The final result was different than I expected it to be. Better in some ways, but not, in my opinion, others, but that’s okay and I’ll tell you why. I learned a very important lesson.

Do not compromise your vision.

Editing is a wonderful thing and essential for a well turned out story. I have the utmost respect for editors, but in the long run the story you write is yours. If suggestions are made that you feel improve things, be honest and flexible enough to go with it. Your readers and ultimately I believe you, the writer, will be glad you did. But you also have to know when to stand fast and stick to your guns. It’s your story and to retain the joy you had in writing it, you have to be true to yourself.

Now that I’ve learned that lesson I’m ready to go on, and in fact have several new works in progress. Coming back to writing has made me happier than I can say, and I’m now keeping pen and paper in the bathroom to write down those ideas and character conversations that so easily come to mind when I’m soaking wet. However, it’s not easy to write on damp paper so please, if anyone ever hears of a waterproof laptop, contact me immediately!     

Amended Soul Blurb

Amended SoulJamie Hardin has had his fair share of ups and downs. He’s been widowed once and divorced once with extreme prejudice. Due to the machinations of his ex-wife, Jamie’s son Rio ran away at sixteen. Now, two years later, Jamie has the chance to reconnect with Rio. To do so, he moves himself and his five-year-old adopted son to a new town, in a new state to start over. The welcome he receives from Rio is everything Jamie had wanted, what he wasn’t prepared for was Jed Matranga. From the moment they meet, a simple handshake is all it takes to light a fire Jamie has no idea how to handle.

Jed Matranga, single werewolf, has just met his mate. In addition to being gentle, caring and clever, Jamie’s emotionally wounded. He’s also not gay. For Jed it will be the challenge of a lifetime to prove to Jamie that trusting his own judgment is the right thing to do, and where relationships are concerned, it’s feelings and not gender that matters.

Amended Soul Excerpt, Warning/Contains Explict Content

Crossing an open stretch of grass, Jamie headed toward a large oak tree he’d spotted earlier in the day. Chill settled against his toes, a product of dew-wet leather, though his skin remained dry. All around him was the sounds of crickets, frogs, and the occasional cry of some night bird in the distance. The fields bordering Mick and Rio’s property had been planted with corn, and Jamie was fascinated by the look of it. During the day, it resembled a living, seven-feet-tall green-and-brown fence—stalks of corn marching around the perimeter in precise, evenly spaced order. Now, enshrouded in darkness, those stalks resembled a rough, shadowy wall.

Reaching the tree, Jamie stopped and leaned against its sturdy trunk, drinking in the night’s ambiance. A slight breeze caused some of the drying corn leaves to dance and make suggestive rattles. The sound prompted thoughts of movies he’d seen in which cornfields had hosted everything from demon-worshipping children to aliens. A sudden shiver slid down Jamie’s spine, and apprehension stole the peace he had found.

Straightening his stance, he prepared to head back to the house. Before taking a single step, Jamie heard the sound of something making its way through the corn. “No way,” he whispered and froze.

A large canine shape stepped from between the concealing stalks, and at that moment, a bank of clouds obscured the sky.

Fear gripped Jamie. In the dark, he strained to see. A dog. It was a dog. Wasn’t it? Jangling nerves screamed at Jamie to run. He held his ground. To run was to be chased. Still, instinct tore at him. Run from danger. Run away. Run!

Jamie trembled with effort. Be still, intellect whispered. Silence reigned. Even the crickets had ceased to sing. Jamie’s breaths rang harsh. Enfolded in darkness, he waited, until the clouds unveiled the moon.

The silvery light revealed a wolf, large and wild. Its unwavering gaze rested on Jamie. In spite of his fear, Jamie was struck by a sense of wonder. The wolf was beautiful. In the moonlight, it became magical, unearthly, unreal. When the wolf moved, reality reasserted itself. Jamie drew a harsh breath. This was no vision.

The distance between them closed. Pausing, the wolf stared. Its muzzle lifted, its nose twitching. Forever passed in seconds until a wavering distortion in the space between them broke the spell of stillness. Blinking to clear his vision, Jamie stared into a darkening veil of nothingness. The wolf was engulfed. What emerged was a man. A naked man.

Jed.

“Jamie? I don’t believe it. What are you doing out here?”

Relief made Jamie light-headed. He sagged back against the welcome support of the oak tree. “Walk,” he said, finding his voice. “Couldn’t sleep. I was taking a walk.”

Jed approached and halted mere inches away. One of his hands landed on the trunk above Jamie’s shoulder, and the other cupped Jamie’s face. Shivers raced over Jamie’s skin as a surge of desire punched him swift and hard. Jed’s eyes glowed, lit from within by something free and untamed. In their gleam, Jamie could see the wolf, its presence mixed with that of the man. Rather than shrink from such an alien sight, he stared, fascinated.

“You all right? I didn’t mean to scare you.”

“I’m fine. My feet wouldn’t move, but my heart tried to make a break for it.”

Jed chuckled. His hand traveled from Jamie’s cheek, over his jaw, and down his throat before coming to rest flat over Jamie’s heart. “It is pounding pretty hard. Jamie, I…”

“What?”

“Earlier today. I pushed.” Jed withdrew his hand from Jamie’s chest. “Probably a little too much.”

The warmth where he had touched Jamie began to dissipate. Losing it felt wrong, like something Jamie would regret. “No.” Jamie grabbed Jed’s hand, guiding it back, holding it in place.

“No?”

Staring at Jed, Jamie struggled to sort his jumbled thoughts and emotions. “I feel something for you.” His admission brought the truth powerfully home. This attraction, no matter how strange and confusing he found it to be, was something he didn’t want to deny. “Damn. This is so…difficult. The truth is, I’ve never been drawn to another man. I’m not exactly sure what the hell I’m doing or even if I should be doing it.”

“I see. Then let me ask you a question. Do you think being attracted to me is wrong?”

“Wrong?” Jamie shook his head. “No. Just different.”

“Maybe it just seems difficult because of your uncertainty. Many people feel that way when facing the unfamiliar.”

Jamie said nothing but took a moment to consider. “To be honest, I’d have to agree.”

“I’m not trying to push you into anything.” Jed’s hand twisted in Jamie’s grasp, his fingers twining with Jamie’s. “But it’s been my experience, once I face the unfamiliar thing—whatever it is—the fear or uncertainty I harbored before doing so, was far worse than warranted.”

“Same here.”

“So, if you don’t think I’ve been too pushy, where do we go from here?”

Jamie’s gaze dropped to Jed’s lips. The upper one was slim and sharply defined, the bottom one, fuller, tempting. “A kiss?”

“I’d like that.”

Jamie watched the corners of Jed’s lips curve upward in a smile. Jamie closed his eyes. He touched his lips to Jed’s. The kiss, though tentative, incited a swirl of pleasurable sensation in the pit of Jamie’s stomach. Their lips slanted, meshed, parted. Their breaths mingled. Exhilaration heightened Jamie’s arousal. He wanted more. A deeper intimacy. With the second kiss, his tongue sought and found Jed’s. The kiss morphed from hesitant to demanding.

Excitement set Jamie’s heart to racing while heat and pressure built in his groin. His cock firmed. Any doubts he had were muted by desire. One hand still clung to Jed’s. His free hand settled against the skin of Jed’s waist. The naked flesh under his fingertips made Jamie hesitate but want pushed him to continue. He slid his hand behind and down, then clutched the upper curve of Jed’s ass. Pulling him close, Jamie ground himself against Jed. Jamie’s cock was fully erect, his need urgent. When Jed pulled back, Jamie voiced a wordless protest.

“Wait,” Jed said. “Your jeans are rough. Can I…” Jed’s free hand went to waistband of Jamie’s jeans.

Tilting his head down, Jamie fastened his gaze on Jed’s cock. It was engorged, thick and ready. As when he’d first touched Jed’s naked skin, Jamie hesitated, waiting for his own reaction. Instead of being repelled by the sight, he was struck by a pulse of pleasurable sensation rippling through him. His own cock felt every bit as hard as Jed’s appeared to be and gave no indication of flagging. Returning his gaze to Jed, he nodded. Gender be damned. Jamie wanted.

“I need both hands,” Jed said. His voice was husky, his breaths short, audible.

He wants this as much as I do. The thought made Jamie’s heart beat faster.

Buy The Book:

About the Author

About Kate:

Kate’s love of books started from the moment she read those fateful words: run, Spot, run! It took her awhile to discover she didn’t just have to read and imagine, but that she could also write stories and so here she is writing romance and loving it. Like chocolate – her ultimate favorite food, with pizza running a close second – writing became addictive. Whether it’s paranormal, contemporary or science fiction about werewolves, other worldly creatures or the average Joe, she can’t get enough.

As for the everyday details, Kate lives in a turn of the century house located in the midst of Indiana farm country, and is kept company by family, along with demanding dogs, contrary cats and a pair of occasionally sweet, and definitely noisy, lovebirds. When not writing, she reads, is an enthusiastic grower of iris, and a fanatic fan of Japanese manga and anime.

Author, Book Info and Buy Links:

Giveaway

Kate Steele is celebrating both her return to writing and the release of Amended Soul by providing us with a Giveaway of a$10 gift certificate from ARe.   Enter to win by leaving a comment for Kate here and using the Rafflecopter giveaway.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.

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A Ali Review: The Werewolf of Grey Lake Inn (Paranormal Days) by Megan Derr

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Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Vector illustration of wolf howling at moon in night forest in green tone.

Astor is tired—tired of his family and the way they never listen to his advice, and tired of being in love with his agent, Tennyson, who after a one night stand made it clear he preferred to keep things professional. The only thing Astor’s not tired of is his job researching haunted inns and hotels to prove just how haunted they’re not.

His latest book is about a notorious inn in the middle of nowhere, and a haunting he suspects has more to do with real werewolves than fake ghosts. It will provide fodder for an excellent non-fiction book, the novel he’s secretly writing, and be so distracting he’ll finally be able to get over Tennyson.

Except when he arrives it’s to find that Tennyson is already there, with every intention of keeping Astor company through the holidays.

This was an enjoyable story that follows Astor as he tries to debunk the myth of the ghost at Grey Lake Inn. Unfortunately what he finds are werewolves. He also finds that his agent Tennyson has followed him to the inn and this is a problem because Astor has strong feelings for the man. Feelings he doesn’t think are reciprocated. As it turns out they are and the two men end up having not only a dangerous encounter with a werewolf, but a sexy and romantic weekend.

The writing style in consistent with this author’s other works so if you’re a fan you should definitely check this out. It is also a good starting point for people who have not read this author before. The story is pretty short and just shows us a snapshot of the two men’s time together over the course of a few days. I would have liked for it to have been a bit longer so I could have gotten to know them better but that aside I did enjoy the book.

Cover art is perfect for the story.

Sales links:  Pre-order Link at Less Than Three (save 15%)| All Romance (ARe) | Amazon| coming soon

Book Details:

ebook
Expected publication: December 23rd 2015 by Less Than Three Press
original titleThe Werewolf of Grey Lake Inn
ISBN139781620046883
edition languageEnglish
seriesParanormal Days

Note: This was originally published in the Bad Moon Rising anthology. It hasn’t changed significantly for the solo release

 

A Jeri Review: Wolf, WY (Wolf #1) by A.F. Henley

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Rating: 3 stars out of 5

Wolf, WY CoverThere’s nothing like a fresh start, and for Randy, still nursing wounds left by a cheating ex and harboring a deep mistrust for all things corporate, Wolf, Wyoming seems like the perfect place to start over. Secluded, quiet, and self-sufficient, Wolf is bound to not only inspire, but to bring Randy the peace he needs. The view’s not bad, either.

Vaughn O’Connell and his family are Randy’s only neighbors for miles, and while Randy knows it’s somewhat unlikely that a man with three kids is gay, it doesn’t hurt to look. When a misunderstanding brings Randy face to face with both Vaughn and his eighteen year old son, Lyle, Randy’s not sure what to feel about either of them.

But things are not what they appear in Wolf, and the closer Randy gets, the stranger the O’Connell family seems…

Although I tend not to be a big fan of paranormal, I decided to give this one a go. Overall, I am glad I did.

The paranormal part of it (wolf shifters) really didn’t come to fruition until about ¾ of the way through the book. Before that we got to know the main character Randy, his potential love interest, Vaugh, and Vaughn’s three kids.

Randy moves to Wolf, WY to escape a life he wasn’t happy with. Working as a lawyer, he was defending people who were probably guilty and his conscience wouldn’t let him live with it any longer. Add to that an ex-fiance who not only dumped him, but was also cheating on him, made the move easy.

Vaughn and family are his closest neighbors by far. He tries to engage them with smiles and waves hello but is ignored. He does notice that Vaughn and his son are quite good looking, although he feels like the father is a jerk and the son is a bit too young for him.

This book is VERY descriptive as far as the scenery, what Randy is thinking and feeling and Wyoming in general. While it absolutely sounds beautiful, it could have been trimmed a bit. I would have enjoyed reading a bit more about Randy’s back story or even Vaughn’s back story. We actually get NONE of Vaughn’s story which disappointed me.

I did really enjoy the fact that Vaughn’s son was making a play at Randy. It added a dynamic that isn’t often seen in books like this. Vaughn’s youngest children were a delight and charming. They added to the story without unnecessarily upping the “cute” factor.

An enjoyable read with enough sex to make it steamy and enough imagery to take your mind to that house in Wyoming.

Terrific book cover.

Sales Links:  Less Than Three Press | All  Romance (ARe) | Amazon | Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, 223 pages
Published October 21st 2015 by Less Than Three Press
ISBN139781620046180
edition languageEnglish
seriesWolf #1

Coffee Sip and Book Break with P.D. Singer ‘Otter Chaos’ (excerpt and giveaway)

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Otter Chaos by P.D. Singer
Release Date: October 9, 2015

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Rocky Ridge Books
Cover Artist: Dar Albert, Wicked Smart Designs

Buy the book: Amazon | Amazon Kindle |All Romance eBooks | Smashwords | Rocky Ridge Books

Apple i Tunes | Kobo

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Blurb

Otter Chaos (includes Tail Slide)

Lon Ewing snowboarded in and turned economist Corey Levigne’s life upside down, introducing him to a world he didn’t know existed. Corey’s still adjusting to a boyfriend who shifts into an otter and raids the koi pond—and now Lon says Corey’s department chair is a werewolf?

Wolves at the university, wolves in the bank—across Lon’s desk sits Professor Melvin Vadas and his hench-wolves, demanding a construction loan for the pack’s new lodge in the mountains. There’s just one little problem: the proposed building site is home to a breeding population of rare fish.

What do wolves care for stupid human rules, an otter who’d barely make a good snack, or one pesky human determined to protect the environment? Once they’re snout to snout with Corey and Lon there’s more than silverscale dace on the Endangered Species list.

Includes Tail Slide (the short that kicked off otter madness)

Fresh powder snow and running water in the Colorado back country call Lon like the moon calls the wolves. Belly-sliding to a good time on the weekends makes up for a workweek at a desk, and meeting Corey adds a whole new level of fun to snowboarding.

It’s easy to slip away for time alone in the woods without raising suspicion, but how’s Lon to entertain himself when bad snow and a worse spill force them off the mountain too early?

Never give an otter a box of Cheerios.

 

Pages or Words: 84500 (11000 Tail Slide, 73500 Otter Chaos) 276 pages total
Categories: M/M Romance, Paranormal

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Excerpt


Threading his way between the tables to reach the group, Corey intended to set the glass down on the small table in their center without interrupting the flow. Maybe he didn’t really need to steady himself on Lon’s shoulder, but it was a good excuse to touch his boyfriend, get a little squeeze and a promise for later in at the same time. “Bet you need to wet your whistle.”

Lon jerked up hard enough to jostle Corey’s arm. Brown liquid slopped over the rim of the glass. At least it missed Lon’s instrument, but what—?

“No. Sorry. But no.” Lon twisted under the strap of his guitar. “We need to leave. Now.”

“Wha—?” Corey all but dropped the glass. “Why?”

“Now. Please.” Lon was up and sidling toward his guitar case.

Corey followed. What else could he do? The man who’d been gleefully leading fiddles and mandolins had cased his instrument and bolted out the side door. Lon barely waited on the porch of the old house turned brewpub, dashing to the passenger side of the RAV4 before Corey was quite outside in the chill spring night.

“Go, go, go,” Lon begged. “Quick.”

“Okay.” Corey tucked his long legs under the steering wheel and peeled out of the parking lot. “Want to explain the sudden need to be elsewhere?”

Lon’s knuckles practically glowed with their whiteness—if the armrest of the passenger seat breathed, Lon would have choked the life out of it three blocks back. “I smelled wolf.”

That again. “I did see Melvin come into the pub.” Corey aimed the truck toward south Boulder, because Lon had that trembly look where his dark brown hair and beard seemed to puff out bigger. Absolutely no reason to stress him, and every reason to take him home and pet him into exhausted, sweaty peace.

“Can you get a job at Harvard or Stanford or somewhere far, far away from CU?” Lon whimpered. “Or decide you don’t like me anymore?”

“No and no.” Corey gave his lover a stern look on the turn into the driveway. “I’m headed for tenure here and I love you. I don’t want to change either one of those things.” He pulled Lon across the console to plant a kiss in short, sleek, hair. “Let’s go look at the koi one last time, and then last one into bed is a rotten egg.”

“Rotten egg! Ick!” But Lon was diverted enough to scamper to the back yard, not too fast to be caught.

 

 

RC

 

Meet the author:

P.D. Singer lives in Colorado with her slightly bemused husband, two rowdy teenage boys, and thirty pounds of cats. She’s a big believer in research, first-hand if possible, so the reader can be quite certain PD has skied down a mountain face-first, been stepped on by rodeo horses, acquired a potato burn or two, and will never, ever, write a novel that includes sky-diving.

When not writing, playing her fiddle, or skiing, she can be found with a book in hand.

 

Where to find the author:


Tour Dates & Stops:

Parker Williams, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Bayou Book Junkie, Inked Rainbow Reads, Full Moon Dreaming, Jessie G. Books, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, My Fiction Nook,

The Hat Party, The Jena Wade, Molly Lolly, Carly’s Book Reviews, Havan Fellows, Open Skye Book Reviews, Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My, BFD Book Blog, V’s Reads, Mikky’s World of Books, MM Good Book Reviews, Divine Magazine, Dawn’s Reading Nook, Two Chicks Obsessed With Books and Eye Candy, SA McAuley, Posy Roberts, Nephy Hart, Three Books Over The Rainbow, Multitasking Mommas, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

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Giveaway

Rafflecopter Prize: 1 signed print book, or  1 ebook (mobi, epub or pdf), otter ornament (offer as separate prizes please).  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.  Please see disclaimer.

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WillPride

A Paul B Review: Temple’s Touch (A Wizard’s Touch #6) by Amber Kell

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Temple's Touch coverMadison Archer and Temple Stewartson have longed for each other for years. When Temple goes to school, they think they have missed their chance. When Madison goes missing, Temple will use all his connections to find his man.

Temple Stewartson was born the son of a wizard father and a werewolf mother. Unlike his siblings who were strong wolves, Temple favored his father’s side of the family. As his brother shows strong alpha tendencies, the Stewartson siblings decide they will start their own pack as soon as Temple has finished his schooling. Having been tutored by the wizards associated with his pack, Temple heads off to wizard school.

Madison Archer is an orphan who lost his pack in a flood when he was a young pup. He was adopted by the members of Temple’s pack. He considers Temple his best friend and longs for the day that he can make Temple his mate. But he feels that he must let Temple go to school so that he can fulfill his destiny to be a healing wizard.

The two have grown up in the same pack, having shared the same bed as pack mates often do but each long for more. Temple believes that since Madison is a full wolf he should feel something but hasn’t so they must not be mates. Madison feels that since Temple is part wizard, the need to mate must not be as strong because of his mixed heritage. Only with the help of Temple’s father do they realize that they are indeed mates.

Problems start just after their mating when a new wolf shows up near the pack house. The pack calls on Temple to calm the jittery wolf down but in doing so, Temple passes out. When he recovers the next day, Temple goes to school and Madison goes to work. When Temple returns from school, Madison is not waiting for him as usual and the new wolf is missing as well. Temple turns to his pack and their friends to find his missing mate and solve the mystery of just who the new wolf was.

This is the sixth book in the Wizard’s Touch series. It is helpful to have read the previous books to get some of the references that are mentioned in the book. Having said that, this book does time jump quite a number of years from the previous books in the series as Temple’s father was a wizard student himself in the previous books. As Temple is the youngest of three children, I would say approximately twenty years or so have passed since the last book. However, it is nice that most of the major characters from the previous volumes either make an appearance or at least mentioned in the storyline.

I enjoyed the characters of Temple and Madison. Given their different backgrounds, I could understand how they would come to the misunderstandings that they did about the other maybe not being their mates. Each assumes that the other would be recognizes that they are their mate and say something but neither do. This makes an important lesson that communication is essential even in were relationships.

The cover art by Posh Gosh depicts two young men in the background with a wolf in the foreground. Decent cover that reflects the characters well.

Sales Links:    Totally Bound Books       All Romance (ARe)      Amazon        Buy It Here

Book details: 
Ebook , 93 pages
Published: April 2015 by Totally Bound
ISBN: 978-1-78430-537-6
Edition: English

Series: A Wizard’s Touch
Jaynell’s Wolf (Wizard’s Touch #1)
Kevin’s Alpha (Wizard’s Touch # 2)
Farren’s Wizard (Wizard’s Touch # 3)
Elijah’s Ghost (Wizard’s Touch #4)
Porter’s Reaper (Wizard’s Touch #5)
Temple’s Touch (Wizard’s Touch #6)

A Stella Review: An Intrepid Trip to Love (A Little Bite of Love #1) by Charlie Cochet

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Rating: 5 stars out of 5

An Intrepid Trip to Love coverTristan ‘Trip’ Hagan is a Husky shifter who was born to be the Hagan Clan’s next Alpha, a position of honor and nobility, a position he never wanted and was all too happy to pass onto his younger brother. But when they discovered his brother couldn’t have pups, the responsibility of continuing the Hagan Alpha line fell back to Trip. Under the weight of the Hagan Council’s demand to fulfill his duty, Trip settled down and produced an heir, but after years of struggling to uphold his family’s traditions, Trip found the courage to do what no other Hagan Alpha had done in the history of the clan: he came out.

Five years later, and Trip is living a happy life with his cheeky pup and their own little makeshift family. True mates within canine shifter clans are very rare, but Trip has had one since he can remember. Despite losing his heart to Boone twenty years ago, Trip holds little hope of ever getting to bond with the sexy Enforcer, as it’s against clan laws for pure-bloods to bond with half-breeds. With the call from their feral halves to seal the bond growing stronger by the day, can Trip and Boone find a way to be together without losing everything?

This story was written as a part of the M/M Romance Group’s “Love Has No Boundaries” event. Group members were asked to write a story prompt inspired by a photo of their choice. Authors of the group selected a photo and prompt that spoke to them and wrote a short story

The blurb tells pretty much everything you have to know about the story so I’m just going to leave some of my thoughts.

First of all it’s free, so picking it will cost nothing, you can give it a chance and I’m sure you’re going to love it. If you are already a Cochet’s fan like me you can’t absolute miss this gem, but if she’s a new to you author, An Intrepid Trip To Love it could be the right book to start knowing how amazingly she writes.

An Intrepid Trip to Love is a fantastic read, it caught me from the start and Robbie got my heart at his first whined Dad!.
The story opens with an hilarious dis-adventure, four grown up men and a seven years old who can’t get rid of a monster of a spider, saved by a woman (of course, we’re awesome!). Robbie is funny and smart, definitely too smart for his age.

“It’s okay, Dad. No one’s going to think any less of you for not being able to kill a spider.”
Trip arched an eyebrow at his son. “You’re the next Alpha, why don’t you kill it?”
“Because I’m seven.” The “duh” wasn’t said but it was certainly implied. “But you, you’re old.”
“I’m thirty-five! In human years, anyway.”
“That’s, like, still super old. Even in human years.”
“Why am I bothering? I have underwear older than you.”
“Gross.”
“They’re clean…”

Trip is the greatest dad ever, even if he makes Robbie feels ashamed of him every day with the unbelievable things trip is capable of. Boone is Trip’s mate since Trip was fifteen years old. Boone has been at his side as his guardian, never insisting to be something more considering the Hagan Clan and its rules. They had some stolen moments sometimes, but Trip can’t take it anymore, being without Boone as his mate is becoming unbearable.

“What did you think you were doing?”
“You always say if we need help or if there’s an emergency to call Boone. You said he’s the biggest, strongest, bravest, most honest, most reliable…”
Trip felt his face burning up as Robbie proceeded to list every one of Boone’s virtues off his little fingers. With a nervous laugh, Trip threw a hand over his pup’s mouth. Mortified didn’t begin to cover it. Boone, on the other hand, seemed thoroughly amused, and his lips quirked up on one side.
“Is that so?”
“Well, you know, you are an Enforcer.”

An Intrepid Trip To Love is funny, sweet, with a great second characters cast and a huge sense of family. There is also a lot of hatred but the HEA is assure so don’t worry, you are going to read a light story.

I reread An Intrepid Trip To Love to refresh my memory of this funny couple and be ready for the second one in the series, Healing Hunter’s Heart, and I loved it more than the first time if possible, cause I already gave it a five stars review.

There is a short free Valentine story too, called The Perfect Valentine’s Day (you can find it here if you are interested. Here we meet Trip and Robbie looking for a present to Boone for the Valentine’s Day. Trip is our usual dork and Robbie is our lovely too smart kid who knows the difference between underwear and a hairband (I’m starting to doubt he’s really Trip’s son!). A super sweet and funny little story, adorable as the first one, in which we can get a glimpse of Trip and Boone life together.

Cover art by Charlie Cochet. Sweet and cute as the story.

Sales Links:  It’s Free here at Goodreads M/M Romance Group    All Romance (ARe) 

Book Details:

Published May 26th 2013 by M/M Romance Group @ goodreads
ebook, 84 pages

A Little Bite of Love Series
An Intrepid Trip To Love #1
The Perfect Valentine’s Day #1,5
Healing Hunter’s Heart #2

 

A MelanieM Review: Deadly Shades of Gold (Altered States #2) by L.E. Harner, and T.A. Webb

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

“Wolf or vamp? Decide. It has to be now.”

Deadly Shades of Gold coverA life altering decision made in seconds. For those were the last words Sam Garrett ever heard—as a human. And as something other than human, his career as a cop was over.

Travis Boudreaux knows exactly how Sam feels, its an all too familiar situation. But as Travis and Sam are about to find out… when some doors close, the golden window of opportunity opens. Crimes against supernaturals require a new and different approach, and once the Feds show up, the Odd Squad isn’t the only law enforcement game in town.

With paranormal crimes flourishing and  a revenge-seeking vampire creating deadly havoc, the new federal agent-in-charge is on a recruiting mission—and he’s more than ready to fight fire with fire. What do you get when you mix old friends, new enemies, and a license to kill?

Pure dynamite.

Warning: This is an erotic urban fantasy. In this series the vampires don’t sparkle, werewolves kill, and the men sometimes have sex. With each other.

Alrighty then!  With Deadly Shades of Gold, the romance of Sam and Travis is about to be well…something hot and wonderful.  As well as totally unexpected.  I loved this story wholeheartedly.  It made me want to do a few high fives and “hell to the yeah’s”!  To recap briefly, Sam and Travis were partners on the force and soon to be partners in love when a vampire attacked Travis and killed him.  But Travis didn’t stay dead for long and his return (on the day of his funeral), revealed to the world that vampires and other supernatural beings were real and living along side of them.  Surprise!  And quite, naturally it split up Sam and Travis to go their separate ways.

In Deep Blues Goodbye, Sam became the focus of two warring supernatural groups and the end result was a life altering decision (not to be revealed here).  The choice made is startling as is the effects it has on Sam, his career, and all those around him.   It also brings Travis back into his life and that’s where this story takes flight for me more once more.  I love this two together.  Apart, its bittersweet but together? They become dynamic and compelling.  It doesn’t matter whether they are human or supernatural, Harner and Webb have created a romance that feels powerful and real, a connection that jumps off the page and into your heart.  This story starts them on the path back to each other and something more as it picks up from that moment.

I love how believable the authors made the characters adjustment to their new status.  There’s plenty of confusion and pain to go around, second guessing and indecision often rules the day.  The process of accepting and adjusting to being a supernatural takes time and we watch it happen as Sam works his way through this tumultuous period. More plot threads are revealed, including perhaps, a motive or two from the head villain himself.  Unknown histories are starting to surface and more supernatural politics combine with romance for another superb installment in this series.  I think this is my favorite so far.

I highly recommend this series.  I love the world building, its layered and complicated, just like the characters themselves.  I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Cover art by Laura Harner.  Love this cover, wish there was more branding to the series.

Sales Links:    All Romance (ARe)      Amazon         Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, 134 pages
Published February 19th 2013 by Hot Corner Press
ISBN139781937252311
edition languageEnglish
urlhttp://lauraharner.com
seriesAltered States #2
charactersSam Garrett (Altered States), Travis Boudreaux

Books in the Altered States Series in the order they should be read:
• Altered States (Altered States, #0.5)
• Deep Blues Goodbye (Altered States, #1)
• Deadly Shades of Gold (Altered States, #2)
• Free Falling Crimson (Altered States, #3)

 

A MelanieM Review: Deep Blues Goodbye (Altered States #1) by L.E. Harner, T.A. Webb

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5

Deep Blues Goodbye coverWith one startling action, the world changed forever. Recently deceased NOPD Detective Travis Boudreaux was in the process of being mourned and buried when he had the bad taste to sit up at his own funeral.  Until that happened no one knew that vampires and werewolves had been living amongst them. Now two years later, the fight is on for civil rights for preternatural beings and most humans are on the bandwagon. Except whoever is killing vampires and would be vampires.

Since the death and return of his partner and almost love, Detective Sam Garrett has hated all things preternatural. Having your undead partner try to make you his first meal will do that to a guy. When Sam’s attitude gets the best of him on the job, Sam finds himself banished to the Paranormal Criminal Investigations Unit—the Odd Squad—under the oversight of Detective Danny Burkette.

Now it’s up to Burkette to work with Garrett by day and Boudreaux by night as they follow a trail of clues that leads from the historic cemeteries of New Orleans to the bayous of southern Louisiana. During the course of their investigations, both men come to the attention  of a Master vampire and the local werewolf pack Alpha.  If they aren’t careful, it won’t be just Boudreaux whose dead, but maybe even Sam as well.  Some lessons in life—and death—take longer to learn…and Sam and Travis find out that not all second chances are created equal.

Warning: This is an erotic urban fantasy. In this series the vampires don’t sparkle, werewolves kill, and the men sometimes have sex. With each other.

Deep Blues Goodbye (Altered States #1) by L.E. Harner and T.A. Webb deepens the amazing world building these authors are constructing for this series.  New Orleans, that rich feast of a city, is the perfect setting for supernatural beings  in love and evil schemes that are slow to unfold.  After that shocker at the end of Altered States, I eagerly grabed this up to see what had occurred only to find that two years had passed and the aftermath is viewed through the various perspective of the characters involved.  And yes, I was a little disappointed.  After all, what happened at the funeral was a stunner for all involved, including the now animated corpse of Travis Boudreaux.  But two years have passed since Travis was turned and now everyone has to deal with the fact that vampires, werewolves and more exist and live among them.  And not everyone is happy about that, including Sam.

I adore Sam, he’s a piece of cynical perfection and disappointment.  What happened to Travis altered Sam as well, especially since both men were so close to falling in love, if they hadn’t already.  But a vampire and fate intervenes and their new  relationship was destroyed…or so they think.  It soon becomes apparent that Sam has never gotten over Travis and that just adds onto the bitterness Sam already feels about the whole undead thing and his partner.  I loved the two of them together and their bonding extends past themselves and the pages to include the reader.  In fact, I so bought into their burgeoning love affair that  aspects of this story threw me off.

Without heading into spoiler territory, other supernaturals arrive to further complicate the current state of affairs and all their attention will be focusing on Sam.   We see Travis as he is trying to move forward with his undead life with not a whole lot of success.  We see Sam also trying to do the same, both are stalled and bitter.  Something has to occur to break the stasis and it’s a doozy.

As part of the events that happen,  a bonded pair will have some wild hot sex with one of our main characters.  Normally this doesn’t bother me, especially when the authors make a case for it to happen.  But here? Not an element I enjoyed.  I understood where the authors were going with it, but I so bought into Sam and Travis’ romance that this aspect never became palatable.  How a reader feels about this (it’s really not cheating) will likely foretell how they feel about this installment in the series.  Some readers will be asking if they can skip over this book (and yes, the third book sort of resolves this), but no *shakes finger*, unfortunately you can’t.

Think of each story as a building block essential to the whole construct.  Miss even one, and you miss key elements that not only enrich the series but deepen the mystery and suspense Harner and Webb are working hard to build.  So much of this story is worthy of your attention and commitment.  And, perhaps,  the few elements that bothered me won’t phase you in the least.  This is going to be one wild ride!

Another reason to start reading this series?  This year’s Pulp Friction 2015 gang situates all their interconnected series in the Altered States universe.  So its double or is that quadruple the fun for all!  So get started.  Each is a fast, wild, suspenseful tale…over before you know it.  However, don’t be astonished if it lingers on in the questions and clues left behind (and even more shockers).

Cover art by Laura Harner works for the series.

Sales Links:       All Romance (ARe)       Amazon      Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, 120 pages
Published August 16th 2012 by Hot Corner Press
ISBN139781937252243
edition languageEnglish
seriesAltered States #1
charactersSam Garrett (Altered States), Travis Boudreaux

Books in the Altered States Series in the order they should be read:

  • Altered States (Altered States, #0.5)
  • Deep Blues Goodbye (Altered States, #1)
  • Deadly Shades of Gold (Altered States, #2)
  • Free Falling Crimson (Altered States, #3)

 

A MelanieM Review: Forgiving Thayne (True Mates #2) by J.R. Loveless

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Rating:  3.5 stars out of 5

Forgiving Thayne coverFor Nicholas Cartwright it was just supposed to be a typical night clubbing. Dancing, hot men, and if he got lucky and hooked up?  Even better. Then the man he left the bar with turned out to be his true mate and everything went to hell.  His mate rejected him, driving Nick away, demolishing all his dreams and hopes for the future.  That was six months ago.  Now Nick has tried everything he can to forget that night and the fact that he has a mate that doesn’t want him.  But he can’t and he is suffering, swamped with the need for the mate his wolf calls for and the pain and humiliation of knowing he’s been rejected.

Thayne Whitedove has always been a wanderer, a lone wolf who takes comfort in the casual hookups and the rare visit home to his pack’s lands.  Then Thayne commits a fatal mistake, one that is following him from place to place in deadly pursuit. The only way to correct his mistake is to accept the one thing he’s never wanted… his mate. Thayne must decide whether to keep running or to stay and fight for Nick’s forgiveness and acceptance.

Burying himself in his work, Nick pushes himself to the point of exhaustion while finding the touch of another unbearable. Suddenly his mate needs his help, and Thayne may be asking for more than Nicholas can find it in himself to give.

Forgiving Thayne is the first story I have read in J.R. Loveless’s True Mates series.  The first story, Chasing Seth, dealt with  veterinarian Seth Davies and his mate, Kasey Whitedove.  This couple figures prominently in this story and the author is careful to include enough information and back history on both of them that I didn’t feel that this story suffered by skipping over book one.  In fact, one of the main characters in Forgiving Thayne, Thayne Whitedove, made appearances in that story as he is Kasey’s brother, to set up a foundation for this one.

The only section where the world building might feel a little incomplete (the full history of the shifter natures of Seth and Nick) seems to be explored more fully in book one.  My curiosity and interest in this author’s shifter universe will send me to the beginning of this series and Chasing Seth for additional information.  Otherwise, I feel that this story can be judged on its own qualities and it has many good ones.

The Whitedove family is part of a Native American shifter tribe that expects a strict adherence to the tribal rules and regulations.  Running a foul of the highest of those laws puts Thayne in direct conflict with his family and tribe.  In addition, an old promise has kept Thayne moving from place to place with limited connections to home and territory.  I loved the richness of Loveless’ setting and shifter lore.  This author has built a deep mythology for their shifters and uses it as a framework for Forgiving Thayne.  The setting, especially the town of Senaka and the Wolf’s Den bar,  lend an authentic tone to the events and characters that appear in this story.  Building on this supernatural structure,  Loveless creates a key component of the plot and narrative that feels logical, yet still surprising.  In fact, I wish more of this aspect of the story had been expanded, to include more details and the reasoning behind it.  It was one of the more intriguing elements here and it made the story for me.

I think most of my issues dealt with the main characters, especially that of Thayne.  His actions and dialog is that of a gold plated jerk, a judgement that should have been disappeared once his reasoning and back history is revealed.  But that aspect of his character remains intact for the majority of the story primarily because the rationale created by the author and the consequences of  old actions just never make any sense.  Without going into too much detail or spoiler territory, the basis for a promise that has severe implications in adulthood never felt solid and his continued actions and poor judgement calls felt more contrived than believable.  To make this element even flimsier, the “aha” moment was diluted by a complete lack of drama that included the reactions of an old friend.  That person we believed in.  Thayne?  Not so much.

What holds up this romance and makes it work is the character of Nicholas Cartwright.  He’s lovely, angst ridden, and totally vulnerable in a way that the reader will connect with.  He saves the romance and the relationship because no matter how the reader will feel about Thayne, Nicholas is there to pull it all back together.

There is a third story on the horizon, Protecting Kai (True Mates #3).  I shall be in line when that one comes out and will pick up and start reading Chasing Seth to complete the back history and make sure I have all the series key components in mind.

Do I recommend this story? Yes, especially to those lovers of shifter romances.  J.R. Loveless throws in some fascinating new touches to wolf shifter lore and her characters have a certain sass and depth I find necessary and interesting.  So check it out and let me know how you feel, about Chasing Seth or Forgiving Thayne!

Cover Artist: Anne Cain has some nice touches and does a good job of branding the series with the same elements.

Sales Links:  

Dreamspinner Press eBook & Paperback

All Romance eBook (ARe)

amazon                       Forgiving Thayne

Book Details:

book, 290 pages
Published October 1st 2014 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 163216213X (ISBN13: 9781632162137)
edition languageEnglish
url http://jrloveless.com/coming-soon
seriesTrue Mates #2

True Mates Series includes:

Chasing Seth (True Mates #1)
Forgiving Thayne (True Mates #2)
Protecting Kai (True Mates #3)  coming soon