June 23, 2013

Braine Reviews: Shadow Hunter by Kait Ballenger

Series: Execution Underground 0.5
Format: Digital ARC
Release Date: June 25, 2013
Publisher: Harlequin HQN
Source: Author
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Shadow Hunter
Vampire hunter Damon Brock's first assignment with the Execution Underground is Rochester, New York, a city crawling with the undead. But he isn't the only hunter in town gunning for vamp blood. Tiffany Solow is fierce and ruthless when it comes to slaying the monsters that destroyed her family-and she works solo. But being alone is no longer so desirable when she meets the mysterious hunter who wants more than just her turf. As they work to massacre the local covens, the line between good and evil blurs when they are forced to decide between their lifelong beliefs... and their newfound hearts.

SHADOW HUNTER is debut author, Kait Ballenger's, first foray to the tumultuous world of paranormal romance fantasy and the second story in the After Dark anthology which she shares with none other than, Gena Showalter.

SHADOW HUNTER is the prequel novella to the series called Execution Underground. This 14 chapter story introduces KBallenger's world of vampire hunters with a lot of sexy on the side to keep things spicy and oh, so interesting. That cherry popping scene is probably one of the hottest one I've read thus far.

Eherm... Back to the story... 

I personally love prequel novellas because it gives us a good taste test if the author's style is up to our liking and if the world s/he is trying to sell is believable. As far as the latter is concerned, I'm all for it. I love the procedural feel of things, the urgency of the missions and living life this side of Danger. It's so exciting and the Underground's Sergeant, James Winfield, looks like a very interesting character. I love erratic personalities and Sergeant Winfield has piqued my interest without a doubt. And have I mentioned that the smex is smoking?!

That said, I adore the heroine, Tiffany Solow. She's brave but vulnerable, very tenacious, driven and passionate about everything she does. Tiffany is some sort of a vigilante after her brother, Mark, was killed by a bunch of vampires and she swore to avenge his death. Throughout her grieving process, she established a connection with Damon, Mark's field partner, and have developed feelings for him despite haven't seen him in person. When their paths crossed, suffice to say it was insta-lust/love for these two and the rest is one big fireworks display.

Now I'm not a fan of insta and aside from that, I didn't like Damon Brock. Yes the man is gorgeous and a tortured hero BUT I didn't appreciate his sins of omissions against Tiffany. I feel that he took advantage of her vulnerability a little bit and let things drag instead of coming out clean to her. In addition to this, during the first couple of chapters I also found him to be a little over dramatic. Punching walls and getting all torn up about things, I expect a much cooler demeanor from a vampire hunter because we all know that getting too emotional gets in the way of hunting.

In any case SHADOW HUNTER is a wonderful series introduction. And the ending is a freakin' cliffhanger! I can't wait to read book 1, Twilight Hunter, to find out what happened to Damon and Tiffany and really get my hands, heart and head dirty with KBallenger's sexy hunters! Plus Twilight Hunter's heroine is named, Frankie, so I'm already biased.

 Purchase After Dark

Non-fiction/Contemporary fiction everyone should read
I don’t read much non-fiction, so I really don’t have an answer for that one. One of the most beautiful books I’ve ever read though, which I specifically think every woman should read, is Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See. Such an amazingly beautiful and well-written story. It’s in my top five favorite novels I’d say. 

Last book you bought 

Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris. I’m a big Sookie fan! My dog is even named Sookie haha. So sad it’s the last book, but even great things have to end eventually I suppose.

Purse or shoe addict? 

Neither. I’m a jewelry addict, specifically big sparkly earrings. I also buy an unnecessary amount of scarves—especially considering there’s only about two months out of the year when I can wear them (I live in Florida).

Movie you don't get tired of watching over and over again 

The Notebook 

Favorite food place 
I don’t think I could choose one favorite. I’m a lover of good food. 

Most memorable place in the world for you 
Memorable place...huh? Not sure on the answer to that one honestly lol. 

Fill in the blanks
I want  Jensen Ackles to sign [touch] my body with his lips, tongue, hands, and...well, just any part of him really ;-)  (Take a number sister! LOL Love this answer!)

Favorite perfume/cologne

I wear Vanilla Lace from Victoria Secret. I also love the smell of my husband’s cologne, which is Vetyver from L’Occitane. 

Cosmetic brand you swear by 
I don’t have a specific brand. Covergirl is probably what I buy most frequently though. 

Next book signing/book conference/appearance gig
I will be signing copies of the After Dark anthology in downtown DeLand, FL at the Tropical Nights event at the Muse Bookshop on July 19th. I’ll also be signing copies of After Dark, and hopefully some copies of Twilight Hunter as well, at the Authors After Dark Conference in Savannah, GA in mid-August.

Kait Ballenger is a full-time paranormal romance author, wife, bellydancer, graduate student, and soon-to-be-professor. She is the multi-published, award-winning author of the Execution Underground paranormal romance series. With a B.A in English from Stetson University, Kait is currently earning an M.F.A in Writing. Kait believes anything is possible with hard work and dedication. One day, she hopes to be a bestseller and to see her novels on the big screen. Look for the next two books in her page-turning Execution Underground series: Twilight Hunter, book one (August 2013) and Immortal Hunter, book two (January 2014).

Follow Her!

Kait is giving away this super cool swag pack to one of you!
This is a Frankie Amato themed nail kit which includes some nail polish (green, blue, purple & red) and pedicure set, plus signed copies of both
(After Dark is signed by Gena Showalter too!)

This is a US Only contest, ends June 30.

Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Tiffany sounds like a great mix of brave and vulernable that I would like her a lot

    1. Yes you will although I know you only read PG books. Really Brandi, you need to read more sexy stuff! LOL

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks YOU for letting us be part of the release party!

  3. I really liked Tiffany! I agree that Brock was a bit melodramatic. Personally I'm not a prequel person, but I can't wait to read Twilight Hunter to see more of this world!

    1. Yeah, Damon Brock isn't my cup of tea but I guess the end justifies the means right? LOL

  4. Ive seen this one around goodreads, looks interesting enough for me to want. Plus thats one sexy cover ;)

    1. I know you've read some Showalter so I'm sure you'll enjoy the anthology. Ning has a copy, borrow it from her :D

  5. I've read all of Gena's books and this one won't be an exception. I can hardly wait to read your part of the book Kait! Thanks for the giveaway!

  6. Aw man! A cliffie? Dang... Well at least it was otherwise a great start to the series.

  7. OOo not heard of this one. OO yes the I blubber in that one like a big baby . Great chat! hehe Jensen Ackles...

    Mich x


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