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September 30, 2014

Loved It: Chained by Night by Larissa Ione

Series: MoonBound Clan Vampires 2
Format: Mass Paperback
Release Date: Sept. 30, 2014
Publisher: Pocket Books
Source: Publisher
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Leader of the vampire clan MoonBound, Hunter will do what he must to save his people from extinction—or worse, a torturous eternity as vampire slaves and subjects of human experimentation.To keep his enemies at bay, he has agreed to mate a rival clan leader’s daughter in return for peace between the clans and an ally in the looming war with the humans.

But survival comes at a price. First, Hunter must break an ancient curse by successfully negotiating three deadly tests. Then he must resist the searing passions of the gorgeous vampire warrior he despises but is bound to mate. Will Hunter stay true to his word? Or will he risk everything for the woman he really loves: the vampire seductress’s identical twin sister?


"Why did groupies think vampires liked dog collars?"

"I'm not going to be the guy who gets turned into the Hulk because of a lab experiment." [Jaggar]
"Please," Grant drawled, "if anything you'd end up like Wolverine."

I was supposed to have died at birth," she rasped. "Every day beyond that is a gift. If I died today, I still would have lived decades longer than I should have." -Aylin

"I came to be with you but it looks like you've already been used," -Hunter

While Bound By Night gave us a sort of dystopian feel focusing on vampire-human dynamics, CHAINED BY NIGHT showed us how utterly fucked up vampire relations are. For a race whose numbers are dwindling and are overpowered by humans, these vampires are idiots for killing each other instead of banding together and coming up with a game plan to even up the playing field.

Photo credit
Anyway, I'm going to break it down quickly for y'all because I'm aware that some of you have either read early reviews, have read this, or are currently reading CHAINED BY NIGHT so I'll keep it simple.

  • Hunter is so edible! I mean he gave me (hot 'n sexy) flashes of Daniel Day Lewis a la The Last of the Mohicans. Oh baby, take out that tomahawk but keep the loincloth!

  • I enjoy the Native American influence among the clans as well as the traditional-progressive struggle between them. Keeping tradition was the source of some of the conflict between MoonBound and the other groups like ShadowSpawn. 

  • Bound by Night gave us the scientific version of what and how vampires are, CHAINED BY NIGHT gave us their cosmology. Samnult, their demon creator, is such a cunning antagonist and I look forward to knowing more about him and what other shiznit he's got up his sleeves. 

  • Twinning! I know twins are the subject of much (nasty) fantasies but trust me, Rasha and Aylin will crush that fantasy. Well Rasha will anyways... bitch be cray cray!

  • I love Aylin but she's too goody goody for my taste. She grew a pair but I prefer my chick a bit rough around the edges. 

  • CHAINED BY NIGHT has some pretty hilarious moments that had me laughing out loud, no joke. 

  • Take out your camo because shit got real between the vamps here. These fangers don't posture around with their chests puffed out, when they say war they mean war. There will be blood and there were lots of it! 

  • I love the magic but I felt it was a bit convenient here. 

  • It goes without saying that the romance is scorching, hot, sexy, and every adjective you can think of to describe an intense relationship. The forbidden element added a delicious layer to Hunter and Aylin's love affair and you'll be kept at the edge of your seat waiting for the resolution. And it was worth the suspense. 

  • You'll hate Myne and Rasha and they'll make you hate them so much that you'll want LIone to write them a book so they get redeemed. 

CHAINED BY NIGHT is just one darn good sequel. I grew tired of vamps but LIone made me enjoy them again.

September 29, 2014

Sarez Loved It: A Little Faith by Emma James + Character Chat

A Little Faith (Ocean Beach, # 1)Series:  Ocean Beach #1
Format: ARC
Release Date: October 9th 2014
Publisher: Author
Source: Author 
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
I had no idea a carefree island vacation would tear my life apart.
But now it’s time to put my walls up, make them impenetrable.
It’s the only way to survive.

Six Years Later…

Harley, the protector. Retro, the straight shooter. Keanu, the funny bone. Levi, the model. And Text, who can’t seem to find himself.

All their lives were permanently altered by one event.

With a pact made, these five best friends need something from Faith.

Is she ready now to give them what they have been waiting for?

Join Faith as she goes on an emotional and heartwarming discovery where all may not be what it seems.

But with every ending, comes a new beginning, a second chance.

You just gotta have A Little Faith...

Welcome to Ocean Beach.

“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.”
~ Bob Marley

If you only read one book this year then let this book be it. It's a story of strength, courage, survival, love and friendship. Bound by unbreakable ties and a past that they all bear scars from, the Ocean Beach gang all have their own burdens to carry and their own tale to tell. It's a tale that you want-no need- to hear.

From the very first chapter my heart broke and mended itself countless times as I followed this amazingly beautiful story. It had a little bit of everything - I laughed as well as cried and I enjoyed
every minute of this story.

The characters came alive on the pages and I lived every moment alongside them all. Lovable and flawed by the end I felt as though I knew each if them personally. That I had seen a part of their souls.

This book goes above and beyond a romance novel. There is a depth to the story and characters that is often missing in todays books. Told in the first person with multiple POVs the story unfolded and flowed effortlessly, allowing me a personal insight into the characters state of mind.

Emma James has nailed it. If this is how she writes her debut novel I can't wait to see her next work. I cannot wait to read the next installment of the Ocean Beach series.

Okay, so I have finally arranged to meet up with some of the Ocean Beach guys, let me tell you these
guys are uber hard to pin down. I have caught up with Harley, Keanu, Slade and Retro who is the
owner of Peace, this super cool café we are at.

Sarez: Hi guys! Thanks for meeting with me today. I know how busy you guys can get.

Harley: Thank you for joining us , Sarez.

Slade: Pleasure, darlin'.

Keanu: Hey  honey, how are you doing? You can sit next to me.

Retro: Hey Sarez, nice to meet you.

*winks at Keanu* I just might do that! (Whispers behind my hand "OH my gosh,
they are even better in real life)

Sarez:  Ok - so obviously I have read the book and I absolutely loved it. I have just a few questions for you guys and I will try not to give to much of the story away. I want the readers to discover you all as I did.

Sarez: So give me one sentence that sums up your outlook on life?

Keanu: I'll go first, I always have something to say.  I keep my outlook tattooed on me.  'That which doesn't kill me, only makes me stronger.' They are powerful words, honey.

Retro: Yeah, dude. I hear ya. Mine would be...second chances rarely come about, so don't waste it. I like to shoot straight from the hip.

Slade: *grunts shifts nervously in chair * I'm still working that out a bit.

Harley: I'm very protective of my friends and family. I have a strong need to protect.

Sarez:  I like that. I love how positive you guys are, considering. You all know how to play hard and take risks. What is the craziest thing you have ever done?

Harley, Keanu and Retro all smile at each other.

What haven't we done?

Keanu: We were pretty wild in our college years.

Retro: Hell. Yeah! Quite a few broken bones when we were younger. Nothing too serious when we got into college, but we sure took it up a notch or two.

Harley: Man, those days with Chance were the best days.

Keanu: Fuck...I mean... far out the things we got up to with wing suit jumps off mountains and jumping out of planes with parachutes on...

Retro: Yeah. They were good times. Surfing the waves off Sunset Cliffs, parkour around the college.

The three guys lean over and bump fists.

Walking through enemy infected terrain.

Keanu: Bro. That's crazy real, right there.

Sarez: * tries to smile at Retro, Harley and Keanu while appearing equally somber toward Slade*

Ok whoa, sorry Slade, didn't mean to bring up any bad memories for ya.

Slade: * shrugs*  Life of a soldier. Shit happens.

Sarez:  Okay so onto a lighter subject then, girls. You all look like you have no problems with the ladies. Tell me what qualities a girl must possess to endear you to her?

Keanu: GIRLS! I love this subject. I like being subjected to girls.

Harley: * rolls eyes at Keanu * Honesty and being faithful.

Slade: I like a strong woman who I can peel back the layers and find the softness that will be underneath.

Keanu: I know a strong woman, her name is Phoenix.

Retro: Yeah. She's my sister!  * eyeballs Slade *

Slade: What?

Harley: * rolls eyes *

Keanu: You know... that woman, who antagonizes you. The one with the nice ass and great set of tits.

Harley: Keeaannnuu.

Keanu: What?

Slade: * grunts and plays with salt shaker *

Keanu: OOo, we are supposed to pretend we don't see what is going on between those two. I think it is called sexual tension. Ok my woman, would like a fun nickname, because that is the way I roll. She would be somebody who effects me on a deep level. I haven't met her yet. I assume it will be like a bolt of lightening to my heart and all that lovey dovey stuff that apparently goes on when you find THE ONE. Retro, I notice you have gone quiet. Cat got your tongue?

Retro: * looks at Slade for a while *  Sarez, my lady, you have met, she is my everything. We are gonna make babies and have them crawl all over this lot.

Sarez: Yes Retro I have. She's a pretty special girl and I wish you the happiest of ever afters with her. I am sure your babies will have these guys twisted around their little fingers from the moment they are born. So Slade do you want to add anything about Phoenix here? You know I think she is a total kick ass chick.

Slade: * squirms uncomfortably as all eyes are on him *, darlin'. I'm good. She is kick ass. True.

Sarez: So once you have these girls, what kind of date would you plan with them to totally sweep them off their feet and make them want nobody else?

Harley: Good question. I think we have all been coasting along with a carefree attitude to sex and women... now you have me thinking.

Retro: Well, I myself like to sit down at my dining table to have something exceptionally good to eat for starters. I managed to sweep my woman off her feet by being me. We had a deep connection, things came to light and we moved forward. I know what she likes and I make it into a date.

Slade: I would like to totally surprise the person I was interested in with a spontaneous date. No chance to back out.  I am not sure what I would do yet, but, it would have to be outstanding. Memorable.

Keanu: You sound like you have somebody in mind and you have been thinking about it.

Retro: * raises one eyebrow at Slade *

Slade: * mumbles * Josie's coming with our drinks now. I need that strong black, about now.

Keanu: I think our first date would take us both by surprise. We probably wouldn't even know we were on a date. I know it will be different, I know it will be life changing.

Retro: Look at you getting all deep.

Keanu: You would know, bro.

Sarez: Okay so you guys are pretty sweet except Retro - I totally can't look at you right now. I think I know what you are getting at. I am going to change the subject again before this conversation goes any further down that path.

Retro: * laughs out loud * Sorry sweetheart,  I forgot you have read the book.

Sarez: So I am a huge animal person. I absolutely adore them - if you could liken yourself to any animal what would it be and why?

Slade: Eagle. I like to observe. I am patient when it comes to my prey. I enjoy the hunt.

Keanu: Wow, man. You are scaring me.

Slade: The only people who need to be scared are the ones doing wrong.

Harley: Lion or tiger. I will protect my pack.

Keanu: I am thinking...ummm... I am playful and like to have fun, so maybe a chimpanzee.

Retro: Easy a horse. I like to be ridden bareback.

Sarez: *looks warily at Slade* Yeah remind me to behave myself around you Slade. They are awesome answers, I can see it too. Especially you as a chimpanzee, Keanu. But Retro your mind has gone a wandering now I think, so I will probably end it here guys.

One last thing before we finish though, I love you guys but if someone was to ask you why they should read A Little Faith, what would you tell them?

Harley: I think we would all agree, this is a story about a strong brotherhood and not everything in life goes according to plan,  shit happens and each of us has something to deal with. It's a story about courage and getting through the tough times. A story about second chances.

Retro: I'm also in it.

Keanu: And I'm pretty funny.

Slade: Somebody save me.

Keanu: Well, if you asked Phoenix nicely...

Sarez: I have to agree with you there Harley. You guys are great! I have had a blast here today with you all. I can't wait to here more of your stories. Maybe we can do this again sometime. Hopefully we can get some of the others here next time - you don't mind if we do it here at Peace again do you Retro? This place is so great. I could totally handle living here.

Retro: It would be a pleasure. You might catch my lady next time.

Sarez: Well thanks again guys...until next time.

Harley: Bye

Keanu: You can sit next to me again, next time.

Slade: Bye, darlin'.

Wow. Those guys are so hot and what a bunch of sweethearts. I could have talked to them all day. You really need to meet these guys and the rest of the Ocean Beach gang. The book is released on October 9th so grab yourself a copy.

    Emma James lives in Queensland, Australia with her smexy husband ,three children and a big black Labrador. Life is busy and most entertaining in the James household. She often bounces ideas off her family and gets very creative responses. She loves to read as much as write. Daytime for writing, night time for reading.

    Emma's debut Contemporary Romance novel , A Little Faith , Ocean Beach series # 1, releases 9th October 2014.

    The Ocean Beach series, has a cast of smexi males.

    The following Ocean Beach novels will be releasing later in 2014 and early 2015:

    Hope Is Lost - Ocean Beach # 2

    Joy Is Found - Ocean Beach # 3

    Will To Protect - Ocean Beach # 4

    Follow Emma on Facebook

    Add me on Facebook | Goodreads

    September 28, 2014

    Steampunk Sundays: Third Daughter by Susan Kaye Quinn

    Series: The Dharian Affairs Trilogy 1
    Format: Mobi
    Release Date: December 13, 2013
    Publisher: CreateSpace
    Source: Amazon
    Recommended By: Kara of Nocturnal Book Reviews
    Genre: YA Steampunk
    Skyships, saber duels, and lots of royal intrigue... and, of course, kissing.

    The Third Daughter of the Queen wants her birthday to arrive so she'll be free to marry for love, but rumors of a new flying weapon may force her to accept a barbarian prince's proposal for a peace-brokering marriage. Desperate to marry the charming courtesan she loves, Aniri agrees to the prince's proposal as a subterfuge in order to spy on him, find the weapon, and hopefully avoid both war and an arranged marriage to a man she does not love.

    Third Daughter is the first book in the The Dharian Affairs Trilogy (Third Daughter, Second Daughter, First Daughter). This steampunk-goes-to-Bollywood (Bollypunk!) romance that takes place in an east-Indian-flavored alternate world filled with skyships, saber duels, and lots of royal intrigue. And, of course, kissing.

    Before I proceed, know that THIRD DAUGHTER is currently FREE at Amazon so be sure to grab a copy before the sale ends!

    That said, I'd like to formally thank Kara over at Nocturnal Book Reviews for reviewing this a while back. I saw the ARC at NetGalley but ignored it because the cover art did not appeal to me. Oh well, another lesson on not judging a book by its cover literally because THIRD DAUGHTER was a unique and amazing read! The blurb is spot-on in summing up this novel and for the purpose of comparisons (to convince you to read this) the world is as rich as Meljean Brook's Iron Seas although on a micro level. The story is concentrated on Dharia, the Steampunk version of India, and its relationship with the neighboring states/regions. The plot is politically driven with a side of romance, lots of intrigue, treason, and double-crossing. 

    5 Reasons why you should read THIRD DAUGHTER

    1. It's Bollypunk y'all! Like Bollywood minus the song and dance numbers and definitely badass. The world-building is simply amazing! Susan Kaye Quinn maintained the exotic and traditional feel of India and mixed it with Steampunk elements. 

    2. She kept the sci-fi simple but plausible and the Steampunk elements wondrous. My favorite is the clockwork pen and her aethroceiver which acts like Morse code device.

    3. I love the politics and how it drove the novel and the series as a whole. Arranged marriages for the sake of alliances and peace, each region having an ace up their sleeve maintaining the balance in the region whilst making peace very precarious.

    4. The spy games enhanced the mystery and suspense of the conflict. Is Prince Ash of Jungali sincere or not? Is he trying to double cross Aniri and the Dharians or is he trustworthy? Who is the real villain here? You'll have your suspicions but you won't confirm it til the end. 

    5. I'll expound more on the romance because though it's not a plot driver, it had lots to do with Aniri's character development and her relationship with Ash. There's a love triangle but it's not a deterrent, as Ash and Anari's are a political match I think it's not unnatural that one of them, in this case, Anari, is in a relationship. There's some mild tension and it was eventually resolved but as THIRD DAUGHTER isn't a romantically driven novel, the love triangle wasn't all that important nor did it have a bearing on the novel as a whole.

    Look out for...

    1. The slow burning romance. This personally didn't bother me but as a lot of you love romance in your books, there's not much of that going on here.

    2. Prince Ash is dreamy!

    3. Anari's relationship with her boyfriend wasn't resolved and this is important as said boyfriend did something bad to Anari.

    Okay the last two items aren't really deterrents so take it however you like it... THIRD DAUGHTER was such a pleasant surprise and truly unique. SKQuinn has carved a niche for herself in the Steampunk genre with this series and if you love fantasy and Steampunk then you must read this.

    September 27, 2014

    Bought, Borrowed & Bagged #119 + Fall TV Premiers

    BB&B (Bought, Borrowed and Bagged) is a weekly meme, inspired my The Story Siren and Pop Culture Junkie, where we share with you the books that we have bought, borrowed or bagged (won or gifted) plus a recap of the previous week's reviews, upcoming reviews, on going events and book movie or television news. 

    BB&B is an homage Barron's Books & Baubles from Karen Marie Moning's smash hit series, Fever. 

    from publishers, authors and tour organizers

    ARCs I got this month
    Wickedly Wonderful by Deborah Blake | Her Lone Wolf by Paige Tyler
    Chained by Night by Larissa Ione | Undead & Unwary by Mary Janice Davidson

    Big & Small

    So here's mini feedback on some season premiers that I managed to catch last week.
    • SLEEPY HOLLOW - The season immediately follows the finale from S1. Ichabod and Abbie are/were stuck in Purgatory. I so love the threads that were opened here especially the unrequited love between Katia and Death aka Headless Horseman. It's so frustrating that Ichabod and Katia are still not reunited after all the pain and heartache they went through in S1. Here's to hoping they manage to find a way to finally be together this year coz I hate long drawn out storylines.

    • HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER - Shonda Rhimes prints were all over the place and it's evident in the storyline and characters. Strong female lead, quirky and shifty supporting characters, witty lines, dry sense of humor, romantic intrigue. I can't help but compare it to Grey's Anatomy, a little formulaic and yet I'm intrigued. Viola Davis has a strong presence onscreen, she's captivating to watch and her character is very, very intriguing: strong yet vulnerable, independent but desperate, she's a badass lawyer with questionable scruples. Worth watching.

    • GOTHAM - Benjamin McKenzie is the last Orange County alum I expected to remain relevant in TV land. I love surprises and I have to say his boy-next-door looks is a great contrast to his straight-laced character, young James Gordon. The whole feel of the show is more realistic and less graphic novel. It's consistent with Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy in that you won't find caped crusaders, masked villains, or colorful costumes littering the streets of Gotham. It's gritty and I'm looking forward to watching more episodes.

    Last Week's Reviews

    Upcoming Reviews
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