October 31, 2014

Naughty Nooner: Captivated by Megan Hart & Tiffany Reisz

Series: Stand-alone
Format: eGalley
Release Date: October 28, 2014
Publisher: Harlequin
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Genre: Contemporary Erotica
Double the passion and seduction as New York Times bestselling author Megan Hart and international bestselling author Tiffany Reisz weave two provocative tales about power, bad-boy lovers and secret desires!

LETTING GO by Megan Hart Colleen goes to the same bar every night and orders the same drink: a whiskey, neat. She doesn't drink it, though. Jesse the bartender notices the beautiful, sad woman who keeps to herself. Until one night when she lets go and lets him in. And after that, Jesse has only one mission--to show her one night is only the beginning.

SEIZE THE NIGHT by Tiffany Reisz
Four years ago, a night of forbidden passion between Remi and Julien, the heirs of two powerful and competitive horse-racing families, led to a feud that is threatening to ruin both farms. Now Remi must find Julien again, but when she does, her need for Julien is just as strong and just as forbidden.

Last week was brutal for me, I don't know what I was thinking committing to a review or tour stop every day. It eventually caught up with me which explains why it's Talk Supe Lite this week. Harlequin's Cosmo Red-Hot Reads, CAPTIVATED, was the perfect interlude with short and sexy hook-up tales by Megan Hart and Tiffany Reisz.  

LETTING GO by Megan Hart: A uptight divorcee, Colleen, hooks up with the single-dad bartender, Jesse, one snowy night. Things quickly got hot and heavy between the two and thanks to their incredible attraction, it eventually turned into something serious albeit Colleen's protestations. 

My appreciation for one-night-stand-turned-serious borders on the skeptic but it was believable in this case. Jesse is a sweet and sincere guy and I found his crush on Colleen very adorable. It's Colleen's backstory, divorced with a verbally abusive ex-husband, that engaged me to this story and had me rooting for her. Compared to her d-bag ex, she's better off with sweet and attentive Jesse even if it's just for a short while. MHart managed to get me emotionally connected to the story despite its short length, Letting Go was surprising and satisfying. 

SEIZE THE NIGHT by Tiffany Reisz: Is a short story based on Romeo and Juliet. In case you're wondering, this isn't part of her Original Sinners series although the families featured here move in the same circle as Wesley Railey's, who sadly didn't make an appearance. This hot read has the same humor and level of sexiness as TReisz popular series albeit being vanilla. Remi and Julien met 4 years ago but their age difference, this caused an uproar between their families which started the infamous rivalry. A fishy race and a ridiculous amount of money that seems to come from nowhere had both scions investigating and what they discovered finally ended their family's feud and they lived happily ever after.

I liked the backstory between Remi and Julien's initial rendezvous but the time in-between was a little unbelievable. Anyway, the point of Seize The Night is the hook-up and these two were at it like bunnies! Compared to the previous story, this was smex first romance second, not that I'm complaining, even if Remi and Julien were super vanilla they didn't lack imagination and I give them A+ for enthusiasm. 

CAPTIVATED was a red hot sexy read that's for sure, both stories complement each other in that Letting Go has more heart and a bit melodramatic while Seize The Night was light and smexier. MHart and TReisz will satisfy your sexy cravings so if you want to cuddle with something hot tonight make sure you check this sizzling eye candy out.

October 30, 2014

Naughty Nooner: Seducing The Groom by Cheryl Holt + Giveaway

Series: Stand-alone
Format: PDF
Release Date: October 30, 2014 
Publisher: Book Baby
Source: Publisher
Genre: Historical Novella
Cheryl Holt celebrates her years as “The Queen of Erotic Romance” with this sexy, yummy, and fun tale of a bride’s seductive antics on her wedding night…

Stephen St. John, Viscount Banbury, is in a bind. His father has cut off his allowance, so he’s had to rein in his decadent habits and split with his beautiful, spoiled mistress whom he can no longer afford. When an American heiress comes to London and dangles her fortune in Stephen’s direction, he sees it as the answer to his prayers. He’ll wed the pretty, delectable heiress, but he won’t let her interfere with his decadent lifestyle. He’s a confirmed bachelor and determined to have a marriage of convenience.

Ellen Foster has traveled to London for the express purpose of buying a titled husband. She’s been husband shopping for months and can’t make up her mind. All the available candidates seem tepid and boring. But when she lays eyes on handsome, dashing Stephen St. John, she knows he’s the one, and with her large fortune as bait, he’s easily snared in her web.

When he suggests a marriage of convenience, she pretends to agree. But she has no intention of living separate lives. She plans to enjoy every delightful, wicked minute that marriage to a rake can provide. With Stephen determined to avoid her, seduction seems the only choice.

Though Stephen doesn’t realize it, Ellen always gets her way, and as she turns their bedchamber into a den of erotic pleasure, poor Stephen doesn’t stand a chance.

I've been sneaking historical romances here and there once in a while hoping to incorporate the genre full to my roster. I need to switch it up once in a while and sometimes the more options the better. Which had me jumping on Cheryl Holt's SEDUCING THE GROOM. It's a 70-paged novella and perfect for my laid back plans for this week. 

It's easy for me to imagine SEDUCING THE GROOM as part of a full-length historical romance novel and a part of me wishes that this was longer so we can witness Ellen and Stephen's love story from beginning to end. CHolt has other and sexier plans though because she jumps right away to their honeymoon. The problem is theirs is an arranged loveless and supposedly sexless marriage, unfortunately Ellen's already fallen for the handsome aristocrat and is intent on consummating their relationship on their wedding night.  

Novellas are tricky and is a usually hit or miss because at times some aspect of the story suffers so it can fit the length. CHolt though made it simple gave SEDUCING THE GROOM a sense of completion. The characters managed to give us a good snapshot of their backstory, the conflict was well rounded and because the plot posed a simple question, to fluck or not to fluck, the resolution was fairly simple as well. Though SEDUCING THE GROOM did not fully satisfy my craving for a great historical romance, it was enough to whet my appetite and plan for more in the nearest future.

London, 1815…

“Well, good night then, Lord Banbury.”
“Good night.”
Stephen St. John, Viscount Banbury, eventually to be Earl of Stafford if his recalcitrant, impossible father ever dropped dead, glared at the interloper who’d now been his wife for all of ten hours. The silence extended; the farewell grew awkward.
What repartee, precisely, was a man supposed to express at a time such as this? Sleep well? Pleasant dreams? See you in the morning? Or how about more aptly, What was I thinking, marrying a woman I don’t know? Have I gone mad?
Nothing seemed appropriate. Astoundingly, he blushed, his cheeks heating with an embarrassing dose of discomfort.
The wedding guests were gone, the house had been tidied by what was left of his domestic staff, and he’d been about to leave too, when he’d stumbled upon her floating down the stairs. She was scarcely dressed, clad in a diaphanous green negligee and robe that hardly covered anything that ought to be covered. Apparently, as she’d concluded that he was already off to his merrymaking, she’d believed herself to be alone in the massive, drafty domicile. Unable to sleep, she’d descended to fetch a relaxing refreshment.
Her hair was blond, the shade of ripened wheat. It was unbound and hanging down her back to brush her bottom, and he was gravely troubled by the display. She was much too forward and assured, prancing about in her nightwear before an unfamiliar man, yet she didn’t appear perturbed.
Yes, he was her husband, but nevertheless, they were strangers.
Even though he hadn’t meant to, he evaluated her graceful figure. He was only human! He couldn’t be expected to avoid looking at what was flaunted in plain sight.
She was much too shapely, and he squirmed uneasily and inspected the floor, only to be confronted by her feet.
Her toenails were painted red! The splash of bright crimson in the dull salon seemed immoderately sexy, out of place, incongruous and irreconcilable with the individual he pictured her to be.
Ordinarily, he was an urbane, sophisticated fellow, renowned and lauded for his aplomb, his polish and poise and, most particularly, for his way with the ladies. Yet with his new bride, he’d been transformed into a bungling, gauche oaf.
From the moment earlier in the day, when she’d waltzed into the parlor, promptly at eleven, he’d behaved like an ass. Throughout the abbreviated ceremony, then the afternoon of toasting and celebration, and the interminable meal that had wrapped up the festivities, he’d constantly tripped over himself, saying the wrong thing, doing the wrong thing, and generally making a fool of himself.
She likely presumed that she’d wed a moronic buffoon.
He was dawdling in the doorway, acting like a simpleton, powerless to depart, but incapable of maintaining any sort of intelligent conversation. 
“Don’t let me keep you,” she obligingly said. Showing him her back, she strolled to the other side of the room, where surprisingly, she helped herself to a stout glass of brandy.
During the excessive, protracted gala, he’d covertly watched her. When his rowdy, wild friends had still been in attendance, she’d had naught to drink. While she’d ceaselessly had a beverage in her hand, he’d never seen her take so much as a sip. So why now?
He was used to consorting with a rather decadent type of lady, so he normally wouldn’t have heeded whether she’d imbibed or not. Usually, he paid no heed to what a female did or didn’t do. But it bothered him to discover that she was so nonplussed by events that she could blithely delight in a nightcap.
“Enjoy your…revelry,” she added. “I’m sure it will be mostentertaining.”
From the beginning, he’d recognized that she had a husky, come-hither voice. When she talked, she always sounded as though she were on the verge of mentioning an indecent proposition. Thus, it was difficult to focus on the content of her speech, because the words kept getting lost in the sensual timbre of any utterance.
Narrowing his gaze, he studied her rounded behind, trying to deduce if she was mocking him with her flip adieu. Was she jesting? Was she serious?
She had to be joking. She had to be!
Though she’d readily and freely yielded to his ultimatum that theirs would be a marriage of convenience, how could she blandly acquiesce to his rushing out to cavort with others on their wedding night? Had she no feelings in the matter? Was she genuinely unconcerned about where he went or what he did? What woman—what wife!—could be so tolerant, so unmoved? What kind of person was she?
There was the crux of his problem. He had no idea.

CHERYL HOLT is a New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon “Top 100” bestselling author of over thirty-five novels.

She’s also a lawyer and mom, and at age forty, with two babies at home, she started a new career as a commercial fiction writer. She’d hoped to be a suspense novelist, but couldn’t sell any of her manuscripts, so she ended up taking a detour into romance where she was stunned to discover that she has a knack for writing some of the world’s greatest love stories.

Her books have been released to wide acclaim, and she has won or been nominated for many national awards. She is considered to be one of the masters of the romance genre. For many years, she was hailed as “The Queen of Erotic Romance” as well as “The International Queen of Villains.” She is particularly proud to have been named “Best Storyteller of the Year” by the trade magazine Romantic Times BOOK Reviews.

She lives and writes in Hollywood, California, and she loves to hear from fans.

Follow Cheryl
Website | Goodreads | Facebook | @theCherylHolt

October 29, 2014

Suped Up Feature: The Sword of Souls by Ellie Di Julio

The Sword of Souls
Forgotten Relics 2
Ellie Di Julio
October 28, 2014
Urban Fantasy
Second chance at life? Check.
Ultra-rare magic powers? Check.
Badass new job? Check.
Saved world from evil goddess? Not so check.

Cora Riley assumed when she joined the FBI’s Supernatural Cases Division that she’d be dismantling Otherworld treachery alongside Jack Alexander, the storied Agent 97 who guided her through the underworld. Instead, she’s filing reports for Sofi Strella, a smart-mouthed agent ten years her junior.

When Jack finally does make contact, it’s not for sidestepper training, a quiet drink, or even an apology; it’s to investigate a magical narcotic that’s boosting supernatural belief to dangerous levels.

The case leads to the realm of Faerie, where Jack encounters an old flame and an even older enemy, both demanding his allegiance. As he battles the entanglements of his past, Cora continues the mission, ultimately facing the eerily-familiar Queen Mab, who wields a legendary blade in the name of Eris, the mad goddess of chaos.

Novel Cinematography: The Movie in Your Mind

You probably don’t think about it much, but I’d bet all the money in my couch cushions that you think a book’s something to hear, not something to watch. When you’re reading, you hear a voice in your head, right? You’re not seeing anything besides words on a page.

But I challenge that. To me, novels are a visual medium.

When I’m working on a book, I have a specific mental picture of what’s happening during each scene. A little movie, if you will. I know what each character looks like, the details of the environment, the colors and textures and emotions. There are specific actions, phrases, and weather. I can see it all in my mind’s eye as if it were real.

It’s my job as an author to choose the best combination of words to get that same picture to appear in your head as you read. I have to transcode visuals into words so that you can turn them back into pictures again. If I’m very good (or very lucky), what you end up seeing in your mind is the same as what I see in mine.

This shared vision concept became super important when I wrote my latest book, The Sword of Souls. There’s an entire chapter devoted to a complicated fight scene that’s interspersed with a tense emotional scene, split into three perspectives. It’s the culmination of several plot threads and, instead of telling them separately, I chose to interweave them, much like a TV show or movie cuts between simultaneous events to increase tension and investment.

Without using cinematic principles to guide my writing, the chapter might’ve gone something like this:

Cora holds her sword and waits for an attack.
At the same time, Sofi and her team of dwarves are walking across the other side of the field.
Sofi takes a music box out of her pocket and buries it in the ground, covering it with honeyed cream. It plays “Over the Rainbow” when she steps on it.

Instead, I replayed the movie in my mind hundreds to times to find the right balance of imagery and information to ensure that you see what I see.

Cora grins and crouches down, choking up on her sword like a baseball bat. She hasn’t had SCD sword training yet, but it’s a pretty simple principle. She’ll learn as she goes.

On the west side of the field, Sofi’s taking advantage of the noise Cora’s detachment is making. Her team of dwarves formed their reflective shield wall before they reached the gravel edge of the field, and now they’re proceeding relentlessly forward.

She darts ahead into the rye, staying low while fishing in her field kit with both hands for her faerie bait. She stomps down moldy stalks, then dumps the pocket-sized music box onto the flattened circle and squeezes the entire bottle of honeyed cream over it. A soggy rendition of “Over the Rainbow” tinkles out when she pokes it on with the toe of her shoe.

See what a huge difference the details make? How you can watch the movie as it unfolds?

Books are so much more than ink on paper, my friends. They’re a ticket to a rich visual world, the result of written cinematography that begins with a scene in a writer’s mind and ends with a movie in yours.

Ellie Di Julio is a nomadic writer currently living in Hamilton, Ontario with her Robert Downey, Jr. lookalike husband and their two cats. Between nerd activities like playing Final Fantasy IX or watching Top Gear, she enthusiastically destroys the kitchen and tries to figure out what it's all about, when you really get down to it. She also writes urban fantasy novels and short stories riddled with pop culture references, peculiar memories, and sexy secret agents.

Follow Ellie
Website | Patreon | @EllieDiJulio | Facebook | Goodreads

October 28, 2014

Suped Up Feature! Cherished by Lexi Blake + Giveaway

Cherished_highres (1) 
Series: Masters and Mercenaries
Release Date: 28th October 2014
Genre: Erotic Fiction
A doctor living a double life
By day, Dr. Will Daley is one of Dallas’s most eligible bachelors, but every night he dons his leathers as one of Sanctum’s most desired Doms. He’s sworn off looking for a long-term relationship but is captivated by the club’s newest member, Bridget Slaten, even though they couldn’t be more different. She comes from a world of privilege and he was raised in poverty. When he discovers she needs a date to her sister’s wedding, he makes certain he’s literally the only man for the job.
A woman no longer willing to live in the shadows
For most of her life, Bridget hid herself behind her laptop. She can write romantic, sensuous lives for her characters but not herself. Having Master Will as her date to the wedding is a thrilling prospect but he has a special request. He wants her to accept two weeks of his services as a Dom, a lover, and expert in BDSM, and that is an offer she can’t refuse. Their sexual chemistry is undeniable, but it’s in the tender moments that Bridget realizes she’s falling for a man who might never trust her with his heart.
A love strong enough to cherish
Together in paradise for a week, Will realizes he can’t imagine his life without Bridget.  As the wedding approaches, ghosts from their past come back to haunt them and threaten to ruin the peace they’ve found. With everything exposed, they will have to risk it all to claim the love that can set them both free.
“I thought you were staying for dinner.” He moved in, taking up all the space. This close, she could see that he had a five-o’clock shadow across his perfect jaw. She was a sucker for a square jaw. Damn it. Even his ears were hot. She kind of wanted to lick them to see if he was ticklish there.


“I think that’s a bad idea.”

“Because I’m not looking for anything serious?” Will asked. “Does everything have to be serious? Do you go into every relationship looking to get married?”

“No. I don’t think about getting married much.” Her parents’ marriage was so bad she often couldn’t stomach the idea. “But I’m getting too old to do the one-night stand thing.”

He moved in closer and she nearly forgot to breathe. He smelled so good. Clean and masculine. Sandalwood. He’d likely washed with it. All over. A vision of him soaping that body made her mouth water. “I didn’t say anything about one-night stands. I said maybe you shouldn’t take every relationship so seriously. Bridget, I want to spend time with you.”
And her nipples were hard. Yeah, they wanted to spend time with him, but her brain was still in charge. “My sister’s getting married in Hawaii.”
Oh, her brain was a traitor, too.
He loomed over her, his body inches away. His lips curled up in the sexiest grin. “Really? That sounds like fun. When is that happening?”
He was going to kiss her. His lips were going to touch hers and she had the sudden and deep fear that she wouldn’t be the same afterward. Still, she couldn’t quite seem to move, couldn’t get the will worked up to step back. She only managed to run her tongue across her lips to make sure they weren’t bone dry. “Soon. Next week.”
He sighed, his hands finding her shoulders. “Oh, I guess you’re going to be out of town then. I was hoping to see you while I was on vacation next week.”
She was mesmerized by his eyes. This close, she could see how green they were. His hands moved to her neck. “You could come with me. I need a date.”
Now she was kind of happy everyone else had turned her down. It seemed right to ask him, good to be here with him.
There was the sound of a phone ringing.
He shook his head as his hands sank into her hair. The way he was taking his time did something for her. The men she’d been with before had all just gone for it and would likely have already been pawing her boobs by now, but Will was moving with languid seduction. It was like a dance. “You need a date?”
The only thing pulling her out of the sensual haze was that stupid phone. Who had a landline these days? “I do. Shouldn’t you get that?”
His nose touched hers as his fingers ran along her scalp, sending pleasurable shivers through her body. “Don’t worry about it. The hospital requires I keep a house phone. And a pager. And a cell. If it’s really important, they’ll page me. This is more fun than answering the phone, don’t you think? Bridget, you know I won’t be able to keep my hands off you if we go to Hawaii together.”
She didn’t want him to. She was fairly certain she was going to fall into bed with him in the next ten minutes. Maybe he was right. Maybe she took everything too seriously and she should have some fun for once in her life. Maybe she could handle it. “Will?”
His mouth hovered right over hers, and there was no way to mistake the satisfaction coming off him. He wanted her. God, he really wanted her. “Yes, Bridget?”
“Do you want to come to Hawaii with me? We could have fun.”

Lexi Blake
NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn't until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.
Her first novel, Their Virgin Captive: Masters of Ménage, Book 1, was a collaboration with New York Times bestselling author Shayla Black. There are four more books available in the series: Their Virgin's Secret, Their Virgin Concubine, Their Virgin Princess and Their Virgin Hostage. The next book in the series, Their Virgin Secretary, is coming to Amazon this April.
In addition to the Masters of Ménage series, she is the author of the Masters and Mercenaries series. The first five novels, The Dom Who Loved Me, The Men with the Golden Cuffs, A Dom is Forever, On Her Master's Secret Service, and Love and Let Die are available now, along with a novella titled Sanctum. The sixth novel, Dungeon Royale, is coming in February of 2014 along with two new novellas, Unconditional, releasing in January of 2014 and Dungeon Games, coming in May of 2014.
In 2013, Lexi also began releasing her urban fantasy series, Thieves. The first two books, Steal the Light and Steal the Day are available now on Amazon. Book 3 in the series, Steal the Moon, is coming in January of 2014.

Sign up for Lexi's free Newsletter
 For more information about her books, her appearances and her wacky life visit her Facebook or her website.

Other Books in The Masters & Mercenaries Series
The Dom Who Loved Me (Masters & Mercenaries Book 1)
eBook: Amazon | Nook | iTunes Kobo | Smashwords | All Romance                                 
Print Book: Amazon | B&N
The Men In The Golden Cuffs (Masters & Mercenaries Book 2)
Amazon | Nook | iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords | All Romance                                             
Print Book: Amazon | B&N
A Dom Is Forever (Masters & Mercenaries Book  3)
Amazon | Nook | iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords | All Romance                                           
Print Book: Amazon | B&N
On Her Master's Secret Service (Masters & Mercenaries Book 4)
Amazon | Barnes&Noble | iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords | All Romance                               
Print Book: Amazon | Barnes&Noble
Sanctum (Masters & Mercenaries Book 4.5)                                                                       
All Romance | Amazon | B&N
Love And Let Die (Masters & Mercenaries Book 5)
Amazon | ARe | B&N | iTunes | Kobo | Smashwords                                                               
Print Book: Amazon
Unconditional (Masters & Mercenaries Book 5.5)
Amazon | Kobo | ARe | Smashwords | B&N | iTunes
Print book: Amazon
Dungeon Royale (Masters & Mercenaries Book 6)
Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo | ARe | Smashwords                                                               
Print Book: Amazon
1001 Dark Nights  (Masters & Mercenaries Book 6.5)                                                    Amazon 

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October 26, 2014

Steampunk Sundays: A Study In Silks by Emma Jane Halloway

Series: The Baskerville Affair 1
Format: eGalley
Release Date: September 24, 2013
Publisher: Del Rey
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
Genre: Adult Steampunk
BLURB: Evelina Cooper, niece of Sherlock Holmes, is ready for her first London Season - except for a murderer, missing automatons, a sorcerer, and a talking mouse. In a Victorian era ruled by a ruthless steam baron council, mechanical power is the real monarch, and sorcery the demon enemy of the empire. Evelina has secretly mastered a coveted weapon - magic that can run machines. Should she trust the handsome, clever rake who speeds her breath, or the dashing trick rider who would dare anything she would ask?

Finding a proper husband is rather like selecting a hound, They all have more bark than bite, my girl. One day you'll look across the breakfast table and realize the only option left is obedience training. Grandma Holmes

Independence doesn't come easily, not when one has enjoyed the privileges of rank. Tobias Roth

He turned to Holmes, "You're nothing but a busybody with a chemistry set." Holmes gave a slow blink, "Indeed. And I now how to make an admirable stink."

Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock put me in the mood to finally tackle Emma Jane Halloway's A STUDY IN SILKS which has been sitting in my ereader gathering virtual dust, for over a year now. Picking up this series is daunting because it's a chunky one with each book averaging at 530+ pages. It's packed with all sorts of things ranging from the trivial, like balls, courtship and aristocratic intrigue, to the more serious types like murder and conspiracies. EJHalloway spared no detail and took her time in introducing the characters, the world they live in, and the conflicts and overlapping entanglements they find themselves in. The Baskerville Affair is one of those epic series where each character is carefully placed and every event has already been determined. It's just a matter of allowing them to settle in their respective places and witness how it'll all play out. 

Leading the cast is Evelina Cooper, Sherlock Holme's niece, who was raised in the circus because her mother made the mistake of falling in love with the wrong person. After calling in favors and pulling strings, Evelina is in her first Season, got introduced to Queen Victoria, hobnobbing with aristocrats, and getting courted by one of the ton's most eligible bachelor, Tobias Roth, the brother of her BFF, Imogen, whose estate Evelina is currently crashing in. But it's not all tea parties and petticoats for Evelina, a maid was just murdered in the Bancroft house and being Evelina, she can't help but investigate calling in her Uncle Sherlock for assistance to which they discovered a very intricate conspiracy with Lord Bancroft, Tobias' father, right smack in the middle of it, leaving Evelina torn between justice and loyalty.

That just skims the surface and a poor piss summation of events so I'm sorry for that.

Moving forward... Evelina, the heroine of A STUDY IN SILKS and the one holding this tale together. At this point, Evelina is in a place where she's approaching a new chapter in her life and has yet to acclimate. She carried the novel well, she's smart and engaging, can be vulnerable and conceited, a realistic girl in the center of a fanciful tale. I like her but I have yet to love her. She's tenacious, fearless, and very loyal but she can also be very irritating sometimes. But like I said, Evelina is in the cusp of something and it's interesting where she'll find herself in the coming book and how she's going to navigate the world of these snobbish aristocrats as an outsider. 

There's a love triangle and Evelina's approach and behavior towards it is what annoyed me. So there's the handsome, Tobias, then there's, Circus Nick, who grew up with Evelina and has been carrying a torch for her all this time. Evelina is strongly attracted to Tobias but since they belong to different classes, it's going to be a scandal and it's a big no-no during this time. At the same time, she still feels loyal to Nick and still somewhat attracted to him however Evelina doesn't want that life anymore and has set her sights to something better aka Tobias. I can't blame her for wanting more, she should want something better for herslef, I just wasn't a fan of her passive-aggressive behavior towards Tobias and how she's snobbed Nick. The good news is EJHalloway is aware of this flaw and didn't inflate it, through Sherlock Holmes' character, s/he basically said that Evelina is way in over her head about her two suitors and should ground herself. Amen! 

The rest of the characters were engaging and their side stories added depth to A STUDY IN SILKS, fleshing out the world even more. All of them are interconnected somehow making the web a sticky one and very intriguing to figure out. The supernatural factor is magical and deadly. There are the cute devas, mechanical animals that houses elemental spirits, cursed artifacts, black magic, and all sorts of accouterments in between rounding up this Steampunk adventure. 

The best part is there is a villain, Dr. Magnus, who is a very cunning formidable foe, and there are antagonists such as Lord Bancroft who dislikes Evelina, and the Barons who are bent on monopolizing England and its citizens regardless of the cost. So the conflicts are layered and all tangled up I don't know how Evelina is going to untangle the mess without getting tripped.

I love EJHalloway's writing style, her Victorian world even with the Steampunk elements, the historical part felt very authentic from the dialogue down to the rules of society, nuances that some authors deem unimportant, failing to realize that vibing this era is crucial in this genre. I love that The Baskerville Affair has an immense world and all encompassing one making it a riveting tale that not only focuses on the mysteries but extends to mundane relationships and the human aspect of the story. I'm definitely glad I finally started this. So I apologize for the ramble, I'll leave it at I LOVE A STUDY IN SILKS and I hope some of you will check it out sooner than later.

The game is still afoot. It might be limping, but it's not finished yet.

October 25, 2014

Suped Up: Last Light by M. Pierce

Last Light | Night Owl Trilogy 2
ARC | From the Author
St. Martin's Press | October 28, 2014 
Matt Sky is missing. After a solo ascent of Longs Peak that left only a large blood stain, tatters of climbing clothing, and the tracks of an animal in the snow, he is presumed dead.

Hannah Catalano is guarding a secret...

Tensions rise, secrets grow bigger, and passions run deeper in the highly anticipated second book in the Night Owl Trilogy.

"Let's not live like other people. Let's not be like other couples."

Where do I start? There's so many things that I want to share about LAST LIGHT by M. Pierce but I don't want to bore you with the details nor do I want to give out spoilers so I'll do my best to focus on the highlights and let you discover and experience Night Owl 2 for yourself.

I must say, M. Pierce the author is one clever mofo. He plotted this series from beginning to end in all aspects starting with the layout of the series down to the marketing. 

I interviewed this turtle last year he said that the series is metafiction. After reading Night Owl I thought M. Pierce is so cocky to present "himself" this way through his character, writing himself in the story thereby blurring the lines between reality and fiction. In hindsight, it is pure marketing genius. I think curiosity is the most harmless reaction he has from his readers at this point because I'm sure half (or more) of us are already in love with him and we all want to know if art is imitating life at this point. So hat's off to you, Sir, you just turned yourself into a sex symbol and I look forward to hearing about what your fandom is going to look like after this.

Last Light
Night Owl lured us with its glorious cliches and Matt & Hannah's impassioned and consuming love affair. Now that we're in deep, M. Pierce is giving us the real deal as LAST LIGHT is nothing like Night Owl plot-wise. Lies, deception, scheming, these just skims the surface of LAST LIGHT. Artists are infamous for their eccentricity and Matthew Sky is no different. He frustrated me to no end in this one and I can only be glad that he's Hannah's pill to swallow because I don't think I'd be able to stand the dude let alone forgive him for his "good intentions". Matthew is definitely a different kind of broken but just as addicting, he can be one manipulative, selfish person and if not for his creative genius, he doesn't have a lot of redeeming qualities at this point.  His brother, Seth, though is more up my alley and I hope we see more of this rocker and yummier Sky sibling in the next book. 

Hannah Catalano is the most improved in this equation, Pierce fleshed her out real well in this installment and showed us why Matt is madly and desperately in love with her. At one point I thought she'll still continue to be a 2-D cliche (her words, not mine) and I'm glad she didn't meet that expectation and showed Matt that she's not blinded by her love for him. Hannah gave a good portrayal of a conflicted woman in love. I don't agree with a few of her decisions, won't cross some of the lines that she did, but she's Matt's Hannah and its her loyalty and faithfulness to him that won me over in the end.

LAST LIGHT is a superb sequel, not only do I love the story, the technique and writing style, this installment confirms that M. Pierce is not "one of those writers" but someone whose career you'll want to follow. I especially enjoyed how he poked fun at the flaws of Night Owl, clearly Pierce managed to take the constructive from the criticisms and used it to his advantage. He also included us bloggers in this tempestuous tale through one of the new characters, Melanie, showing that our sphere is an integral part of a book's success and maybe an homage to us? I don't know but I appreciate the inclusion, it was very thoughtful of him to do so. Finally LAST LIGHT is worth reading and it's the one that will make a fan of you yet (in case you're not quite there), if you're following the series, you should should get to this soon, pre-order the darn thing as waiting is ill advised.