A MelanieM Review: Descendant (Apocalypse Rising Book 1) by Mychael Black

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Rating: 2 stars out of 5

Andrew Blackwell is only one of countless humans who managed to survive post-World War III. Living in the shell of what was once New York City, he focuses on working hard and playing hard. Nothing else matters.

But fate has other ideas, and they arrive in the form of a rather surly angel who’s been sent to find the one special human who can possibly help save humankind.

Thrown into yet another war, Andrew has no choice but to trust Mikhail … no matter where the angel may lead him.

I first started reading this author through the Legends of the Romanorum Series, a complex and riveting series I very much enjoyed that was co-authored by Shayne Carmichael. Once that series was finished, I really lost track of anything else Black was writing.   So when I saw that JMS Books had released a new story by this author, I grabbed it up, eager to see what the new story offered up.

Sadly,  while there are some terrific elements here, the overall tale just never came together for me, which was quite the disappointment. Descendant (Apocalypse Rising Book 1) by Mychael Black is incredibly short which leaves no room for character development, world building, or even much in overall plot depth, which pains me to say.  It reads more like an outline, less like an actual published story, granted with tons of sex that makes little sense.

One of the interesting elements here is that Andrew Blackwell is sought after by Heaven and Hell because he’s the only descendant of John the Baptist, and therefore, one of the closest links to the son of God still living.  I think that’s how it goes.  Really, there is no exposition here.  The world is a mess after yet another world war but again no  world building to lay a foundation.  We find out that’ there’s a way station between Heaven and Earth but little else.  Andrew and Mikhail jump into meaningless sex that instantly turns into love I think, there’s tons of shouting and yelling and then oh yes, the war between Heaven and Hell is on.  What?

The book is over.  And it’s just begun!  We are just really pages in.  Granted it’s the first in the series but still.  If the reader is left feeling clueless, well,  I would be floored if they were feeling anything else.  Sometimes I wanted to ask if Black was going for a satire or for a straight up supernatural romance, because it was hard to tell at times.

I think I’m leaving the series here.  I never came to care about any of the characters or their various fates, let alone the Apocalypse.  Maybe I will revisit that earlier series or check out other stories this author has written in the meantime.  As for this short tale, I’ll leave that up to you.

Cover art: Written Ink Designs.   Cover is ok, the angel is appropriate to the story, except the city is supposed to be in tatters.  Oh, well, half right is something.

Sales Links:  JMS Books LLC | Kobo | Amazon

Book Details:

Kindle Edition
Published March 30th 2019 by JMS Books LLC
ASINB07NPJYVDG

Want Some Spooktacular Stories? Check Out Haunted Hotties In Time for All Hallows Eve! (Excerpt and giveway)

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Author Names: Kiernan Kelly, Laney Cairo, Alex Cohen, Katey Hawthorne,
Jamie Jennings, Aaron Michaels, Jacey Mills, L.J. Hamlin, Shira Glassman,
Sheri Velarde, Kassandra Lea, Mychael Black

Book Name: Haunted Hotties Volume 1
Release Date: October 14, 2015

Goodreads Link:
Publisher: Torquere Press
Cover Artist: BSClay

Buy the book:  Torquere Books

 

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Blurb(s)

This Halloween collection has a little something for everybody. With demons, ghosts, psychics, reapers, shifters, and witches… a rainbow of paranormal/supernatural is included.

In Nine-Tenths of the Law by Kiernan Kelly, Oliver discovers he has a haunted sex toy. In Bear Hugs by Laney Cairo, Martin’s boyfriend might be bear shifter and apparently that’s news to him. In Houdini’s Masquerade by Alex Cohen, when Lila meets a succubus, everything changes. In Præsidium by Katey Hawthorne, Thackeray needs helps from a witch who won’t help him until he explains his demon. In Black Cat by Jamie Jennings, when a cat shifter can see ghosts, Micah’s simple life suddenly isn’t. In Haunted Honeymoon by Aaron Michaels, Dylan and Jake seem to be sharing their non-honeymoon with a couple of ghosts.

In And the Tarot Cards Said by Jacey Mills, an insistent ghost shouldn’t be too much to handle for psychic Vassily and his Tarot-reading assistant Ben. In Spirit Wolf by L.J. Hamlin, when Dawson rescues an injured wolf shifter, it’s not just his book that gets worked on while getting back to nature. In Wet Nails by Shira Glassman, it’s not every day a glamorous ’50s actress comes out of a TV but lonely grad student Adina isn’t complaining. In Possessed by Love by Sheri Velarde, a storm trapping them together gives Andrew and Damian the chance they’ve been waiting for. In The Last Night by Kassandra Lea, Eric gets one night a year and he always picks one particular Halloween. In Molly by Mychael Black, Detectives Cameron and Chase discover the murderer plaguing their city is more sinister than they could have known and not entirely human.

 

Pages or Words: 71,000 words
Categories: Contemporary, Gay Fiction, Horror, Lesbian Romance, M/M Romance, Paranormal, Romance, Anthology

Excerpt: From Nine-Tenths of the Law by Kiernan Kelly

Let me set the scene for you. There I was, on my bed, naked, my asshole greased, and the butt plug inserted in it as far as possible, angled to hit my prostate, the vibrating option turned on. I was fisting my cock, rock hard and slick with lube, edging so close to orgasm my balls felt ready to pop.

“Fuck, it’s dark in here.”

I believe I may have completely levitated off the mattress. I know my hard-on wilted like an ice sculpture in a microwave. Scanning the bedroom, I looked for an intruder, but could see no one.

“Tight, too. I always did love a tight, hot ass.”

The speaker was British; the voice, deep and sexy, and coming from right behind me. I spun around in a circle a few times, trying to catch the person I assumed could only be a machete-wielding-chainsaw-brandishing-serial killer that happened to have a silky, dark chocolate voice, but I couldn’t see anyone. As far as I could discover, I was alone, which of course meant I’d imagined the voice.

“What are you doing, Olivier? Stop it at once. You’re making me dizzy.”

Olivier? No one had called me that in years, not since… Hearing the old nickname was shocking enough to leach the fear out of me for a minute. It took me another full sixty seconds to realize the deliciously decadent voice was not only real, but also somewhat familiar, and more importantly, coming from my ass.

That’s when I finally fainted.

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Where to find Torquere Press:

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Tour Dates & Stops:

Parker Williams, Happily Ever Chapter, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, MM Good Book Reviews, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, Cheekypee Reads and Reviews, BFD Book Blog, 3 Chicks After Dark, V’s Reads, Decadent Delights, The Hat Party, Book Reviews, Rants, and Raves, Havan Fellows, Divine Magazine, KathyMac Reviews, Andrew Q. Gordon, Jessie G. Books, Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance, Foxylutely Book Reviews, Chris McHart, Redz World, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Sassygirl Books, Three Books Over The Rainbow, Bayou Book Junkie, The Jena Wade, The Day Before You Came, the Twins: Talon ps & Princess so, Open Skye Book Reviews, Inked Rainbow Reads, Velvet Panic, Iyana Jenna, Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My, Emotion in Motion

Giveaway

Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: E-copy of the anthology.  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the publisher and Pride Promotions.

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Review: Christmas Wish (a Romanorum world story) by Shayne Carmichael & Mychael Black

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

All I Want Christmas WishIt has been ten years since Elian was forced to leave his soulmate, mortal Ryan Nixon.  Elian was a angel, a grigori who is a watcher angel who teaches human certain life lessons.  They are not supposed to get involved with humans and Elian broke all their rules when he fell in love with Ryan and became his lover.  Forced to separate from Ryan, Elian has now completed his punishment and returned to Earth to find Ryan.

But the man has greatly changed.  The man Elian left was brash, intelligent and ambitious.  The Ryan Elian found was homeless, gaunt, and on the verge of dying.  Both men have now paid for their mistakes.  Ryan has lost everything his ambition and greed initially won him.  Elian lost ten years in isolation, banished from Earth to pay for breaking the rules.  Now the angel has found his lover once more.  Is it too late for their love to succeed?  Or will their christmas wish make a miracle happen so they can find a way back to each other?

Shayne Carmichael and Mychael Black’s Romanorum stories are among my favorites so I was delighted to see this Torquere Holiday Sip that ventured back into that universe and brought back a major character, Cian, albeit in a minor role.  The authors gifts of characterization and description bring the plight of Ryan Nixon powerfully to life.  This is Elian’s first sighting of Ryan after ten years apart and it is a heartbreaking one:

Elian spotted a lone figure on a wooden bench, partially hidden by a tattered coat. Elian’s heart broke all over again. Ryan had indeed learned about the dangers of greed and avarice, and the lesson had taken everything — everything — away from him, leaving him a broken, destitute man.

Threadbare gloves barely covered the hands that held the coat closed against the bite of the winter wind. Though he was only thirty-two, time had etched lines in the once- youthful face, and a sprinkling of gray dusted the black hair.

Huddled on the bench, he appeared to pay no attention to the few who braved the cold on their own business. A half-eaten sandwich lay forgotten in its plastic wrapping as Ryan stared off in the distance at a grove of trees.

Elian crouched in front of him, meeting Ryan’s empty gaze. He reached out and smoothed a lock of dark hair back from green eyes that once held a spark of life. Now they just seemed… lost.

The man Elian is confronted with is someone who has lost all hope and seems ready to die, one of many found on any winter street in any city or town.  An added layer to Ryan’s despair is the fact that he is to blame for his downfall, that his avarice and overwhelming ambition that made him rich also ruined him and Ryan has had ten years to realize that.

Carmichael and Black make Ryan believable in his self-loathing and despair.  He has gone beyond bitterness into an emotional place of isolation and emptiness that gives this portrait of homelessness a feel of authenticity.  Elian’s character, an angel who defied Heaven’s laws to be with his lover, is harder to grasp, probably because he is more of a two note persona, goodness and light, to feel entirely credible.  And their love story and reconnection, while emotionally engaging, felt too rushed to be believable, especially after all that has occurred during their ten-year separation.

These authors have made their angel characters multidimensional in the past so I think the issue with Elian is that the story length doesn’t give the authors enough space to imbue Elian with the depth of character he needs to feel real.  In fact, I think that shortness hurts this story in almost every way.  For those readers unfamiliar with the Romanorum universe, the lack of backstory will leave many of them confused about the plot.  Especially when Cian appears to offer his apologies to Elian.  Most people will wonder exactly what and who Cian is referring to (or exactly who Cian is and why he is important) when offering his explanation for his actions.  Unless you have read all the previous books or at least The Prince’s Angel, you will be lost during this section of the story.

I did really like this story but I had the background to do so.  I absolutely recommend this series and would want any new reader to start at the beginning with The Prince’s Angel to get a better understanding of the universe and the huge cast of characters to be found there, including angels and vampires.  Used as a part of the whole, then I can absolutely recommend Christmas Wish to all.

Cover artist is not listed as I suspect this is a blanket cover used for many of Torquere Holiday Sip stories.

Books in the Romanorum series:

The Prince’s Angel (Legends of the Romanorum, #1)
And the Two Shall Become One (Legends of the Romanorum, #2)
Forever May Not Be Long Enough (Legends of the Romanorum, #3)
Christmas Wish (Legends of the Romanorum, #4)

Book Details:

ebook, 26 pages
Published December 4th 2013 by Torquere Press

Review: Fever Anthology by M Rode

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Rating: 4 stars out of 5

If you love cowboys, than this is the anthology for you.  From cowboy tv stars to those that ride bucking bulls and every permutation in between, these 8 stories will make you laugh, make you sigh, even reach for a fan or too but always make you remember why you love a cowboy.

Stories included in Fever are:Fever cover

Loose Riggin’ by Julia Talbot
Two Buckets and a Snakeskin Suit by Aaron Michaels
Torn by Sean Michael
Cowboy and Indian by Rob Rosen
Heart of Dixie by Mychael Black
Ready to Ride by Katherine Halle
White Hat/Black Hat by Kiernan Kelly
In the Pocket, a Roughstock story by BA Tortuga

I really enjoyed this anthology, especially because cowboys are a real weakness for me.  Of special interest was the new story from BA Tortuga in her Roughstock series, I cannot get enough of those boys.  It also introduced me to a series I hadn’t heard of, Mychael Black’s Hearth and Home series, so that was a plus too.  Here in sequence as they appear are mini reviews of each story:

1.  Loose Riggin‘ by Julia Talbot: 3.5 stars

One cowboy on the way up, one cowboy bull rider on the way down.  Baron LeBlanc is a top bullrider at the end of his career.  During one ride he injuries himself badly and an young bull rider, Arlen Deamus, offers to take care of him and become his traveling partner.  I loved this story and thought the characters and the plot were full of promise.  It is the perfect introduction for a longer story.  Julia Talbot draws us in with her wonderful characters, great names and vivid descriptions but just as we are settling in, its over. As a short story, it ends so abruptly that it feels incomplete and the reader feels more than a little frustrated after investing emotionally in the story.  I would love to see this author expand Baron and Arlen romance into a full length book.  I will be first in line to pick it up.

2. Two Buckets and a Snakeskin Suit by Aaron Michaels: Rating 3.5 stars out of 5

While on vacation, Marcus and his sister Shelly attend camel races outside Las Vegas.  Shelly is dying to meet an Australian cowboy and these camel races have more than their share of those.  But when Marcus is hurt after he falls off a camel, he is the one who captures the attention of the only Aussie cowboy there.  This was a cute little romance between a man talked into riding a camel by his sister and the Aussie cowboy who just happens to be a chiropractor who comes to his aid.  Michaels did a nice job with presenting us with a well rounded character in Marcus and Shelly but I would have loved a little more back story on Vic.  But it’s cute, hot, and has a realistic HFN.

3.  Torn by Sean Michael: 5 stars for the heat alone

Pistol, an injured bull rider, returns home to his partner Bender and their ranch after a long  6 month absence on the rodeo circuit and shoulder surgery.  He is unsure of his welcome after receiving an angry  phone call from his  partner following his injury.  Bender’s love for Pistol is both the source of his anger and the one thing that will heal it.  This is my second favorite story in the collection.  Sean Michael gets everything right in this story.  We get all the information we need about these two men and their long term relationship from Michael’s descriptions of their tense posture, their loving gestures and a dialog that  telegraphs a well established intimacy at every level.  Bender is tired of his lover’s injuries and this last one scared him badly.  Pistol loves riding bulls and is frightened that his time as a bullrider is coming to an end.  The situation is tense, hot, loving, angry, gentle, just everything you would expect from two scared people who love each other deeply and are faced with a serious situation.  The ending is perfection, but then so is this short story.  It doesn’t need to be longer, it doesn’t need any additional backstory.  It ends where it should.  Lovely.  Here is a tease. Pistol is returning home after surgery unsure of his welcome:

He opened the door, pushed it open and stood, trying to keep them from the arm still in the sling. “Hey y’all, you happy to see me?”

“You should have called and let me know.” Bender waited for the dogs to have their hello, blue eyes on him like twin laser beams.

“I didn’t want you worrying. Jack needed his guest room back.” He’d been imposing. Not to mention, the man’s mother-in-law had come to help with the last few days of Mary Ellen’s pregnancy, and he’d wanted to come home. Bender told the dogs to “scatter,” and they did.

Before Pistol could say anything Bender was on him, mouth covering his in a kiss that smashed his lips against his teeth and totally stole his breath.

Oh. Oh, thank God. He pushed up into the kiss, damn near sobbing with relief.

4. Cowboy and Indian by Rob Rosen: 2 stars out of 5

Jed sees a poster for a fifty-dollar prize for the longest bronco buck advertised outside a saloon.  He figures his horse Bessy needs a new saddle and aims to get it for her by riding in the rodeo.  Along the way he runs into an Apache warrior, Taza, who wants to help his people.  They make love, not war and end up with a future neither of them ever dreamed of.   There are quite a number of things about this story that I have issues with, but the portrait of Taza, an Apache warrior, is the largest.  Having a Native American character, especially in a historical story, can be a iffy element if not handled just right.  For me, Taza just did not work.  From his pidgin English which reminded me of the “Me, Tonto, you white man” variety to the fact that he drops trow for an unknown white man just after the awful Apache wars have ended….well it’s not just unrealistic but downright ridiculous.  Here is their first interchange:

 “Jed,” I told him, with a polite nod. “White man sounds so, well now, formal.”

With his free hand, he pounded his chest. “Taza,” he informed me. “In your language, means Apache warrior.”

I nodded my head. “Pleasure, Taza.”

And then he nodded, releasing the beast before sending it swinging. “You want to pleasure Taza?”

The only way that piece of dialog would work is in a Mel Brooks comedy.  And it just goes further downhill from there.  This is the one story I would skip over.

5. Heart of Dixie by Mychael Black: Rating 4 stars out of 5

Mack Sexton has been in love with his best friend and handyman Les Spencer for a long time.  Les feels the same but neither man has acknowledged let alone acted on their feelings.  Then one day everything changes.  Heart of Dixie is a snapshot of a relationship that is part of a series called Hearth and Home by Mychael Black.  I am unfamiliar with that series but got enough of a taste of it from this story that I will be scampering back to pick up the rest.  Black develops the characters and setting to the point that it and both men feel real and the reader connects with them from the start.  Mack’s sister, Kate, is a lively character in her own right and the interaction among the three of them comes across as long established and affectionate.  Enjoyable and romantic.  I loved this one.

6. Ready To Ride by Katherine Halle: 4 stars out of 5

Eric is an orthopedic surgeon volunteering his time with the Justin Sports Medicine program. Ben Greene is champion Saddle Bronc rider Eric has come to love.  When Eric’s volunteer time with the rodeo comes to an end, Ben must travel on the circuit alone.  And while neither man has talked about where their relationship is going, both love each other deeply.  When Ben is receives a season-ending injury during a ride, Eric decides that, conversation or not, he is bringing his man home for good.  I loved Halle’s characters and thought she got the character of Ben with his avoidance of “mushy talk” just right.  While most of the story is seen through Eric’s eyes,  Halle shows us that Ben’s actions telegraph his feelings perfectly to his lover and that words are not always necessary.  This story has romance, cowboys and HEA in a nice short package.

7. White Hat/Black Hat by Kiernan Kelly: 4.25 stars out of 5

The time is 1968, the place Hollywood where a new TV western is getting ready to go into production.  Two men, Dallas Frank and Stone Grant, arrive to audition for the two leads, Black Bart and Sheriff Carson Star, the White Hat/Black Hat title characters.  To each man’s surprise and delight, they win the roles and secretly the love of each other.   For the next forty years, they pretend to hate each other in public while continuing a love affair that has lasted as long as their show.  Then their show is cancelled.  What will they do now?  Kelly gives us a terrific look back at old Hollywood and its outlook on homosexuality.  Through small interludes we watch as Dallas (real name Joe Bob) and Stone Grant (real name Arvin Mason) settle into a long term relationship while playing the Hollywood game to protect the series and their reputation. The ending is rewarding, the relationship has a very authentic feel as does the times the men pass through.  My third favorite story of the collection.

8. In the Pocket, a Roughstock story by BA Tortuga: 5 out of 5 stars

Sterling is a new bullfighter and he loves his job.  He also loves working with his hero and fellow bullfighter, Coke Pharris.  But rodeo clown Dillon Walsh is tired of the youngster drooling on his man and figures a little matchmaking is in order.  When stock  contractor Colby Tyburn asks for an introduction to Sterling, Dillon sees an opportunity and takes it, maneuvering Sterling into a date with the stock contractor.  Colby Tyburn has been watching Sterling for some time and loves what he sees….a gorgeous energetic young man, all want and desire.  Sparks fly at the first introduction but neither man expects the white hot sex to turn into something deeper and just perhaps, permanent.  In the Pocket is a Roughstock story. So if the reader is familiar with the series, than you already know all about Coke Pharris and his rodeo clown lover, Dillon Walsh.  They happen to be a favorite couple of mine so it is wonderful to see them make an appearance here.  But the focus of the story is the young (and virginal) bullfighter, Sterling, and the older, more experienced man, Colby Tyburn, a roughstock contractor.

Sterling is a bouncy Tigger of a character.  He is youthful, energetic to the extreme and has a bad case of hero worship when it comes to Coke Pharris.  Unfortunately for Sterling, Coke is taken and Dillon is not happy that Sterling can’t keep his hands off his man.  BA Tortuga paints the perfect portrait of innocent enthusiasm and lustful need all wrapped up in one young man who doesn’t seem to know what to do with it all.  I just loved Sterling, he absolutely made me smile.  Colby Tyburn could have come off as a predator but his appreciation for Sterling and all of his qualities, not just his physical traits, brings him back to a person the reader can relate to.  Their sexual encounter is sexy, white hot, and ultimately very touching.  It is not necessary to have read the other Roughstock stories, but it does help to round out the back history of the other men mentioned, however casually.   There are over 17 stories in the Roughstock series, Coke and Dillon’s story is called Roughstock: And a Smile- Season One. I absolutely recommend them all.  Here is a taste:

Nate (was) screaming his head off to get the bull’s attention. Joa landed, but luckily the Brazilian was ready, and they sort of strong-armed each other.

“Gotcha.”

He flung Joa toward Pharris and put himself between the cowboy and Merry-Go-Round. He heard Coke grunt, but then he and Nate were busy playing a game of slap the bull on the nose, trading off as it went round and round. This was his favorite part, the fun part. They did their little dance, and he pulled his butt in, hearing the whoosh as two thousand pounds went by.

“Woohoo!” He grinned at the gate shut, jogging over to Pharris, who clapped him on the back.

He loved his life.

Loved it.

Cover illustration by BSClay is perfect in tone and design for this collection.

Book Details:

ebook, 195 pages
Published June 5th 2013 by Torquere Press
ISBN
1610404858 (ISBN13: 9781610404853)
edition language
English

A Book Giveaway, Riding the Weather Rollercoaster, and the Week Ahead in Reviews

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So far the Washington Metro area has felt like Seattle, WA, and now we are aiming for Phoenix, AZ.  We have had close to 12 inches of rain in the last month alone, and that doesn’t seem to be letting up as we head towards the middle of July.  Really, folks, nothing like 100 percent humidity for a smokey Fourth of July.  Now the heat wave that baked the western states has hit here as well.  Temperature is rising to 98º today.  Now add to that the fact that the ground squishes with every footstep and a high humidity….well, it is little wonder I expect to see monkeys swinging from the maples at any time.  It is downright tropical outside.  Well ok, we did see a runaway red panda last week that escaped from the National Zoo (now safely back home after a trip to Adams Morgan, a very trendy place).  And a couple of teenage black bears that decided to tour downtown Washington for a suitable condo to live in.  I am betting air-conditioning and a pool were on their list of must haves!   So I am seeing a day spent inside knitting and reading on the agenda for the rest of the day.  I did get my coleus and caladiums bought on sale planted yesterday, as well as some yanking of smartweed but anything else will have to wait until the temperatures go down.

Now on to the exciting week ahead.  Kendall McKenna’s latest release, The Final Line is just out.  It is the another book in her wonderful Recon Diaries series.  On Monday, Kendall McKenna will be here with a guest blog and a book contest.  We will be giving away, courtesy of MLR Press, a copy of The Final Line to one of the people who comment on her blog and my review, which will be posted the next day.  Here is the blurb for the book:

Staff Sergeant Corey Yarwood is an instructor at the Basic Reconnaissance Course. His last deployment ended in horror, but he can’t remember those events. Battling severe PTSD, Corey’s drinking is growing out of control.

Sean Chandler walks into a dive bar, and into Corey’s life. An actor and a musician, Sean has the empathy and compassion to sooth Corey’s pain, and the strength to support him as he struggles to heal.

Corey’s lost memories are pivotal to a civilian murder, and a military investigation. Remembering could mean salvation, or destruction. Will the truth be too much for Sean to handle?

So mark your calendars for July 8 and 9 for your chance to win a copy of this wonderful book!  And thank you, MLR Press and Laura Baumbach for the copies of The Final Line.  Now here is the week ahead in reviews:

Monday, July 8, 2013:                 Guest Blog with Kendall McKenna, author of The Final Line

Book Contest.  One copy of The Final Line will be given away

Tuesday, July 9, 2013:                  Review of The Final Line, last day to comment for the contest

Wednesday, July 10,2013:          Pickup Men by LC Chase, winner of contest announced

Thursday, July 11, 2013:             Changing Planes by Karenna Colcroft

Friday, July 12, 2013:                  Fever Anthology by M. Rode

Saturday, July 13, 2013:              In Pursuit of the Bang On, Well Done, and apparently Endangered Short Story

So that’s our exciting week ahead.  I will leave you with a picture of Winston, recently groomed.  He has settled into our family as though he has

DSCN3917 always been there.  And here is a recipe for a drink to keep this hot weather in its place!  This cocktail is called appropriately Adios Motherfucker or AMF.  I have included the recipe as well as a link to the video on how to make this delicious drink.  A great way to say goodbye heatwave or  anything else to want to get rid of:

Adios Motherfucker CocktailAMF Recipe:

Scale ingredients to servings
1/2 oz vodka
1/2 oz rum
1/2 oz tequila
1/2 oz gin
1/2 oz Blue Curacao liqueur
2 oz sweet and sour mix
2 oz 7-Up® soda

Pour all ingredients except the 7-Up into a chilled glass filled with ice cubes. Top with 7-Up and stir gently.
Read more: Adios Motherfucker recipe http://www.drinksmixer.com/drink735.html#ixzz2YHs7Z756

Review of Forever May Not Be Long Enough (Legends of the Romanorum #3) by Mychael Black and Shayne Carmichael

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Rating: 4.25 stars

Mael Black and his consort, Cian, are busy with their responsibilities and their plan to bring a son with their joined blood into their lives. The fact that Mael Black is the Vampire Prince of London and Cian, a vampire hunting angel, makes their combined duties that much more complicated.  The vampires under Mael’s rule are unhappy with his choice of consort as is his father, the powerful Lord Nigel.   And while Cian no longer hunts vampires, sometimes his very nature can cause misunderstandings in their relationship as Cian is still trying to figure out what it means to be human.

A messenger brings a summons from the court in Rome.  An ancient force is awake and coming to destroy the Romanorum and with it all that Mael and Cian hold dear. When their plans for a son is revealed to Nigel, he plots to separate his son from Cian by any means possible, including death.  With court intrigue, mysterious were deaths, and  unexpected betrayals to deal with as well as the new threat, it will take Mael, Cian, along with a contingent of gods, vampires, and angels to combat the ancient evil and save their world.

It’s been four years since the last book, And Two Shall Become One (Legends of the Romanorum #2) was published and I had forgotten how much I had loved Mael Black and Cian.  And now with Forever May Not Be Long Enough (Legends of the Romanorum #3), their saga is finally over, although other couples in the series look to be getting their own books.  Here, the authors have given Mael and Cian a wonderful sendoff that left me happily satisfied and looking forward to more.

The premise of the series hooked me in from the very start.  You have a vampire Prince and a vampire killing Angel attracted to each other when by their very natures they should be deadly enemies. The first book covers their unconventional  romance from the beginning, where we see the emotional turmoil and mental anguish their feelings bring.  The second book in series sees their relationship continue to deepen as Mael announces to the court that Cian is now his consort and the consequences of that decision. Now they are an established couple but still discovering parts of each other previously unknown.  Cian is a 3,000 year old angel who is still trying to figure out what it means to be human and that includes jealousy.  Mael understands human nature but has not seen what a angry Angel can mean.  I love the fact that Black and Carmichael take the issues that might pop up as a couple navigates a new relationship and applies it to a new couple with diametrically opposed natures. And does a great job with it.  Yes, Mael and Cian are busy with their jobs that they forget to make time for each other.  Typical issue.  But Cian is Mael’s ghoul and needs to feed from him, not so typical. Mael needs to understand that Cian accepts his job as Prince and understand the pressures he is under. Typical.  That is job contains meeting with were rulers and messages from the devil, not so typical. And so on.  Typical relationship ramped up to nth degree.

The characterizations here are wonderful, full of beings is it easy to love.  In fact Cornelius, court sorcerer, and Brandon, a young vampire rescued off the streets almost stole the second book away from the two main characters, they were that special and endearing in every way.  For those of you who loved them as I did, both Cornelius and Brandon appear here as well.  Another couple starts a relationship here that I suspect will continue, along with Cornelius and Brandon, in other books.  In fact, I would say the problem here is that there is a surfeit of great characters and couples all striving for the readers attention.  Along with the couples already mentioned, back from previous books are Michael and Selena, Dio and Josh,  and so many others that it becomes hard to remember who is paired up and what their backstory is.  An abundance of wealth that could have been spread over additional pages or another story.  Then start throwing in Egyptian gods, Lucifer, werewolves, and the cast inflates almost more than the story can handle.

And that comes back to my final quibble.  If you have not read the first two books, you will be a little baffled once you start reading this book as the backstories and character development is contained in the previous stories . It is taken for granted that the reader is familiar with the convoluted plot lines and familial connections here.  This is a richly layered saga.  Coming in on it cold is definitely not recommended.  Start from the beginning.  Watch the relationship happen.  Weep and shout for joy during the second book. Come to love the characters as I did and then pick up this book.  You won’t be sorry. And now I will wait to see which couple gets the next book.  I hope it won’t be another four years before I find out.

Books in the series, in the order they were  written and should be read:

The Prince’s Angel (Legends of the Romanorum #1) Rating: 4 stars

And Two Shall Become One (Legends of the Romanorum #2) Rating: 4.5 stars

Forever May Not Be Long Enough (Legends of the Romanorum #3) Rating: 4.25 stars

Cover:  Gorgeous cover by Alessia Brio