Short & Sweet – Blood of the Maple (Maggie’s Grove #1) by Dana Marie Bell

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011, Short & Sweet Reviews 0 Comments

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Short & Sweet – Blood of the Maple (Maggie’s Grove #1) by Dana Marie BellBlood of the Maple by Dana Marie Bell
Series: Maggie's Grove #1
Published by Carina Press on April 11, 2011
Pages: 236
Genres: Diiiirrrrrrttyyy, Paranormal, Romance
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon
Goodreads


two-stars

A seduction-gone-wrong leaves vampire Parker Hollis with a new vegetarian lifestyle and on the run from a vengeful witch. Moving to small-town Maggie's Grove, Parker meets a redheaded dryad with green, leafy blood that draws him in a way he hasn't experienced in decades. His new neighbor smells divine, and it isn't long before craving gives in to need.

In a unique community of supernaturals, tree-loving outcast Amara Schwedler has never quite fit in. She's scarred by a traumatic incident and feared by the local townsfolk. She's convinced Parker will look elsewhere for a mate once he discovers she's not one of the O-positive set, and can't believe it when Parker finds her irresistible.

When the witch who's been plaguing Parker's life discovers the newfound attraction between Parker and Amara, she takes out her anger on the town. Can the supernaturals of Maggie's Grove accept Amara and band together in time to withstand the assaults of the enraged witch?

I had really been looking forward to this book, I thought it was going to be A LOT better than it ended up being. The story was extremely fast paced, set in this ‘Stepford’ type society, just with supernaturals, including a vampire, Parker, cursed to be a vegetarian. Go figure he finds a dryad, Amara, that solves that exact problem. Anyways, the crazy ex-girlfriend that put the curse on Parker is still trying to come after him and cause problems, and that’s the story in a nutshell. Sorry, this is half-assed.

The relationship between Parker and Amara was a bit irritating… I have read plenty of novels where the characters fall madly in love almost immediately, but these two were married by date number two. Not only that, but there was no real connection between the two other than the fact that Parker wanted to suck her dry. It reminded me a lot of the relationship between Diana and Matthew in A Discovery of Witches , but not in the best way.

Unfortunately I don’t think this is a series that I will be continuing.

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Book Review – Ultraviolet (Ultraviolet #1) by R.J. Anderson

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Book Reviews, Read in 2011, YA

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review – Ultraviolet (Ultraviolet #1) by R.J. AndersonUltraviolet by R.J. Anderson
Series: Ultraviolet #1
Published by Carolrhoda Lab on June 2nd 2011
Pages: 416
Genres: Romance, Sci-fi
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Quicksilver

four-stars

Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.
This is not her story.
Unless you count the part where I killed her.

Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison's condition is proving difficult to diagnose. Alison herself can't explain what happened: one minute she was fighting with Tori -- the next she disintegrated. Into nothing. But that's impossible. Right?

 

‘I realized then that even though I was a tiny speck in an infinite cosmos, a blip on the timeline of eternity, I was not without purpose. And as long as I had a part in the music of the spheres, even if it was only a single grace note, I was not worthless. Nor was I alone.’

Right off the bat this reminded me of ‘My Soul to Lose’ – girl wakes up in mental institution with no idea how she got there. Luckily that’s where the resemblance stopped. Ultraviolet is about 16 year old Alison Jeffries who is placed in Pine Hills, a psychiatric treatment center, with no idea at first of why she’s there. Slowly the memories start coming back to her of an altercation she had with popular girl Tori Beaugrand the same day the police are now claiming she disappeared and hasn’t been seen since.

Alison’s been placed in a mental institution because its believed that something is mentally wrong with her. When just the opposite is true. She has an extremely rare and special ability. Her ability reminded me of the girl off of the TV show Heroes who could see the colors that sounds created, Emma? Anyways, the story was good and and despite the fact that I’m not that big of a sci-fi fan this was hugely enjoyable.

The story builds off of Alison’s gift and you slowly learn more and more about it. She has synesthesia and is such an interesting and eye-opening neurological condition, I highly recommend googling it and reading more about it. Yep, it’s a real thing. By the time the end rolls around the story explodes and becomes something so much more than you could have even begun to anticipate. You finally realize what’s been going on all this time and what actually happened to Tori. Huge shockers. It was fantastic and nothing like what I was expecting.

I ended up editing this review after finding out that this is in fact a part of a series and that more information/answers can be expected. The one thing that I discovered upon editing this review (over a year after reading) was that this was still extremely clear in my head. I read so many books that I find most of them just get lost in the ‘shuffle’ and similar story lines and they all just inevitably blend together. Ultraviolet is still completely clear in my hand and stands in a category on its own in my opinion. This was fantastic and I’m so glad that we have more story to look forward. Highly recommended.

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Short Story Review – Hearts in Darkness by Laura Kaye

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011, Short Stories 0 Comments

Short Story Review – Hearts in Darkness by Laura KayeHearts in Darkness by Laura Kaye
Published by Self-Published on April 20th 2011
Pages: 102
Genres: Diiiirrrrrrttyyy, Romance
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Amazon
Goodreads


three-half-stars

Makenna James thinks her day can't get any worse, until she finds herself stuck in a pitch-black elevator with a complete stranger. Distracted by a phone call and juggling too much stuff, the pin-striped accountant caught only a glimpse of a dragon tattoo on his hand before the lights went out.

Caden Grayson is amused when a redhead literally falls at his feet. His amusement turns to panic when the power fails. Despite his piercings, tats, and vicious scar, he's terrified of the dark and confined spaces. Now, he's trapped in his own worst nightmare.

To fight fear, they must both reach out and open up. With no preconceived notions based on looks to hold them back, they discover just how much they have in common. In the warming darkness, attraction grows and sparks fly, but will they feel the same when the lights come back on?

Hearts in Darkness is a short little contemporary romance about Makenna James and Caden Grayson getting locked in an elevator together for the night… in complete darkness. I really enjoyed this even though I didn’t realize it was contemporary until I was well into the story (not my typical read).

I’m going to have to agree completely with similar reviews that mention how the writing and the point of view shifts definitely threw you off. I can understand telling the story from one point of view and then back-tracking in order to tell the story from the point of view of the other individual… but it lacked something in this story. It lacked flow for one, and also… I felt that the author didn’t need to do this for every interaction between the characters. Blah, I don’t know, I’m having trouble forming sentences this morning.

I liked it, I enjoyed it, I will keep an eye out for more from this author in the future.

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Short Story Review – Unlocked (Turner #1.6) by Courtney Milan

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011, Short Stories 0 Comments

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Short Story Review – Unlocked (Turner #1.6) by Courtney MilanUnlocked by Courtney Milan
Series: Turner #1.6
Published by Self-Published on May 26, 2011
Pages: 180
Genres: Historical Romance
Format: eBook
Source: Netgalley
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Unclaimed

four-stars

A perpetual wallflower destined for spinsterhood, Lady Elaine Warren is resigned to her position in society. So when Evan Carlton, the powerful, popular Earl of Westfeld, singles her out upon his return to England, she knows what it means. Her former tormenter is up to his old tricks, and she's his intended victim. This time, though, the earl is going to discover that wallflowers can fight back.

Evan has come to regret his cruel, callow past. At first, he only wants to make up for past wrongs. But when Elaine throws his initial apology in his face, he finds himself wanting more. And this time, what torments him might be love...

Unlocked by Courtney Milan is about Lady Elaine Warren and her constant torture she endures by individuals in society. She was bullied at a young age and it unfortunately failed to cease as she grew older. This story is about her overcoming all and breaking out of her shell.

This was indeed a nice surprise. I love a good romance novel that leaves me with a smile on my face. This novel was so heartbreaking at times but so adorable the next. I loved it! I agree with many of the reviewers comments regarding the length of the novel. As much as I loved it, it would have been nice if the author had gone into the story with a bit more detail.

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Book Review – Paranormalcy (Paranormalcy #1) by Kiersten White

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Book Reviews, Read in 2011, YA 0 Comments

Book Review – Paranormalcy (Paranormalcy #1) by Kiersten WhiteParanormalcy by Kiersten White
Series: Paranormalcy #1
Published by HarperTeen on August 31, 2010
Pages: 368
Genres: Fantasy, Romance
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads


two-half-stars

Weird as it is working for the International Paranormal Containment Agency, Evie’s always thought of herself as normal. Sure, her best friend is a mermaid, her ex-boyfriend is a faerie, she's falling for a shape-shifter, and she's the only person who can see through paranormals' glamours, but still. Normal.

Only now paranormals are dying, and Evie's dreams are filled with haunting voices and mysterious prophecies. She soon realizes that there may be a link between her abilities and the sudden rash of deaths. Not only that, but she may very well be at the center of a dark faerie prophecy promising destruction to all paranormal creatures.

So much for normal.

Okay so the main character Evie is like some Paranormal Agent for the International Paranormal Contaimment Agency (IPCA). Right off the bat this book reminded me of Ally Carter’s Gallagher Girls series…just with a vampire here and a mermaid there. It’s an easy read but I have a hard time with YA novels that are extremely immature. For example, one of the intro lines about her taser is pink with rhinestones and named Tasey. That was almost too much for me.

The story continues with Evie doing her job to capture paranormals and bring them back to the agency for their protection or if they’re wreaking havoc on humans. All kinds of paranormals too; werewolves, vampires, mermaids, shapeshifters, banshees… hags? There’s also an underlying story about Evie and her kind of ex-boyfriend faerie. I found him extremely creepy and didn’t like him one bit. Or Raquel. That woman sighed way too damn much.

Once the story picked up around the halfway point, it actually got pretty interesting, but there was just something about this story that didn’t click with me. Not sure what exactly. Maybe it was the continued reference to Tasey and her pink knife.

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Short and Sweet Review – Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress #1) by Jeaniene Frost

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011 0 Comments

Short and Sweet Review – Halfway to the Grave (Night Huntress #1) by Jeaniene FrostHalfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost
Series: Night Huntress #1
Published by HarperCollins on October 30, 2007
Pages: 384
Genres: Romance, Urban Fantasy
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: At Grave's End

three-half-stars

Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father—the one responsible for ruining her mother's life. Then she's captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unholy partnership.

In exchange for finding her father, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her battle reflexes are as sharp as his fangs. She's amazed she doesn't end up as his dinner—are there actually good vampires? Pretty soon Bones will have her convinced that being half-dead doesn't have to be all bad. But before she can enjoy her newfound status as kick-ass demon hunter, Cat and Bones are pursued by a group of killers. Now Cat will have to choose a side . . . and Bones is turning out to be as tempting as any man with a heartbeat.

I’ve been waiting to read this series for a while and I finally decided to just go for it. Halfway to the Grave is the first in the Night Huntress Series. It introduces Cat Crawfield, a 22 year old half-vampire half-human born after her mother was raped by a vampire. Cat has been seeking out vampires to kill them since she was 16 as her own way of avenging what happened to her mother and at the same time attempting to find out who her father is. She ends up making a deal with a vampire she meets, Bones, when he offers to train her to become better at what she does in return for her assistance in killing vampires that he needs dead.

I loved Cat, I loved Bones, the book made me laugh… it was great. I loved the relationship between the two as well. Cat’s mother irritated me… she didn’t exactly force Cat to go out and kill vampires to avenge her, but, it seemed like that was the only thing that made her happy and the only thing that she cared about. I think she could’ve cared about Cat’s well-being a little more. The ending didn’t leave off as much of a cliffhanger, but I’m definitely interested in continuing this series.

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Short and Sweet Review – Deadline (Newsflesh #2) by Mira Grant

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011 2 Comments

Short and Sweet Review – Deadline (Newsflesh #2) by Mira GrantDeadline by Mira Grant
Series: Newsflesh #2
Published by Orbit on June 1st 2011
Pages: 570
Genres: Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic, Horror
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Feed

five-stars

Shaun Mason is a man without a mission. Not even running the news organization he built with his sister has the same urgency as it used to. Playing with dead things just doesn't seem as fun when you've lost as much as he has.

But when a CDC researcher fakes her own death and appears on his doorstep with a ravenous pack of zombies in tow, Shaun has a newfound interest in life. Because she brings news-he may have put down the monster who attacked them, but the conspiracy is far from dead.

Now, Shaun hits the road to find what truth can be found at the end of a shotgun.

 

 

The Newsflesh Series

I was really hoping that book 2 lived up to the expectations I set from reading Feed. I thought Feed was amazing… Deadline hit the mark as well. I’m not even sure how to write a proper review without giving anything away, because I’ve had that happen personally one too many times, so I will just say this… the danger and the excitement it doesn’t cease. It’s still a page turner. And the cliff-hanger ending (OMG-I was screaming and my eyes were enormous I’m sure) is huge and you’ll be dying to get your hands on book 3. When does book 3 come out? Way too far into the future. *sigh*

My first concern was when you read a book in a series and a lot of people are killed off, a whole new set of characters is introduced in the next book…and half the time I end up hating the series because I generally hate the newly introduced characters. I was happy to see that this was not the case… I loved the new characters in Deadline. Mira/Seanan didn’t even make the reiteration of the first book obnoxious. Usually authors go on and on about shit that already happened and it drives me nuts. But whatever, I’m just complaining. Haha

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Book Review – Beyond the Highland Mist (Highlander #1) by Karen Marie Moning

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011 0 Comments

Book Review – Beyond the Highland Mist (Highlander #1) by Karen Marie MoningBeyond the Highland Mist by Karen Marie Moning
Series: Highlander #1
Published by Dell on November 4, 2009
Pages: 388
Genres: Historical Romance
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Iced

three-stars

He would sell his warrior soul to possess her. . . .

An alluring laird...

He was known throughout the kingdom as Hawk, legendary predator of the battlefield and the boudoir. No woman could refuse his touch, but no woman ever stirred his heart—until a vengeful fairy tumbled Adrienne de Simone out of modern-day Seattle and into medieval Scotland. Captive in a century not her own, entirely too bold, too outspoken, she was an irresistible challenge to the sixteenth-century rogue. Coerced into a marriage with Hawk, Adrienne vowed to keep him at arm's length—but his sweet seduction played havoc with her resolve.

A prisoner in time...

She had a perfect "no" on her perfect lips for the notorious laird, but Hawk swore she would whisper his name with desire, begging for the passion he longed to ignite within her. Not even the barriers of time and space would keep him from winning her love. Despite her uncertainty about following the promptings of her own passionate heart, Adrienne's reservations were no match for Hawk's determination to keep her by his side. . . .

I started reading this novel after finishing KMM’s ‘Fever’ Series because I wanted to read more of her books so I figured I’d go ahead and start with the first one.

I’m not sure if I was in the ‘romance’ mood but it took me forever to get through this book, and not because it was boring but… It seemed like the longest damn book ever. Stuff kept happening but I kept thinking… was that really necessary? I think 50-100 pages could have easily been cut out. Plus, I kinda wanted to rip Adrienne’s head off. lol She’s thrown back in time from the 20th century and is soon married off to ‘the Hawk’. I was a little leery of the possible cheesiness involved with a man named ‘the Hawk’ but I let it slide. But this man turns out to be so wonderful! He’s good to her, cares for her, gives her everything she wants, loves her, etc. I’ll stop. Yet? She’s got man issues and refuses to love ‘beautiful men’ because she had a bad experience and can’t seem to get past it. I can understand having a situation impact you that harshly, but she took it to the point of ridiculous. They’d be spending some quality time together and she’s enjoying herself but then all of a sudden! Wait! NO! I hate beautiful men get away from me! It was just silly and irritating. I think if I read ‘I hate beautiful men’ one more time the book was going to be thrown out the window. Hypothetically speaking of course since that would have involved my kindle. 🙂

And Olivia… why didn’t someone just throw her off a cliff already? She should’ve been thrown out the front door the moment she set foot in that house. Apparently the ‘beautiful man’ is an idiot and didn’t see that problem coming from a mile away. There were some parts that were really funny though. One of my favorites was when the Hawk and Grimm were leaving and he crossed paths with Adam:

“And Grimm, you might tell her for me that I have coffee from the Rom for her.”
“You will not tell her that!” Hawk snapped. Her extreme love for coffee was already understood by her new husband. I imagine that’s exactly how I’d be if I traveled back in time to the 15th century without a Starbucks in sight.

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Short and Sweet Review – Feed (Newsflesh #1) by Mira Grant

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2011 1 Comment

Short and Sweet Review – Feed (Newsflesh #1) by Mira GrantFeed by Mira Grant
Series: Newsflesh #1
Published by Orbit on May 1st 2010
Pages: 609
Genres: Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic, Horror
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Deadline

five-stars

 

The year was 2014. We had cured cancer. We had beaten the common cold. But in doing so we created something new, something terrible that no one could stop. The infection spread, virus blocks taking over bodies and minds with one, unstoppable command: FEED. Now, twenty years after the Rising, bloggers Georgia and Shaun Mason are on the trail of the biggest story of their lives - the dark conspiracy behind the infected. The truth will get out, even if it kills them.

 

 

Feed introduces Georgia Mason (George), Shaun Mason, and Georgette Meissonier (Buffy) – bloggers covering an upcoming Presidential Election 20 years after two viruses, that were meant to cure the common cold and cancer, combined and brought the dead to life.

I have to say right off the bat that this author does an amazing job with this book. Rather than your typical zombie book where it briefly explains why there are rotting corpses wandering the streets eating people and then proceeds to focus solely on said zombies; Feed delves into details of the world itself and explains it in near perfect detail. The story pulls you in from the very beginning and even though at times you think that the explanation could have been shortened, it was worth it. So worth it. When you reach the mid-point of the book, the excitement starts to pick up and it gets SO GOOD. Once you reach that point? Well, I was practically hyperventilating the entire time waiting to see what happened next… I couldn’t read fast enough.

And the ending? Wow. So completely and utterly heart breaking. I’m not quite sure how you could NOT cry, even a little bit. I don’t want to give a single thing away because those little shockers are what make the book. I just wanted to pass on my two cents and say that this book is amazing and well worth the time and effort to read.

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Short Story Review – Winter’s Passage (Iron Fey #1.5) by Julie Kagawa

July 16, 2011 Bonnie Book Reviews, Read in 2011, Short Stories, YA 0 Comments

Short Story Review – Winter’s Passage (Iron Fey #1.5) by Julie KagawaWinter's Passage by Julie Kagawa
Series: The Iron Fey #1.5
Published by Harlequin Teen on May 20, 2010
Pages: 51
Genres: Fantasy, Romance
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: The Iron King

three-stars

Meghan Chase used to be an ordinary girl... until she discovered that she is really a faery princess. After escaping from the clutches of the deadly Iron fey. Meghan must follow through on her promise to return to the equally dangerous Winter Court with her forbidden love, Prince Ash. But first, Meghan has one request: that they visit Puck - Meghan's best friend and servant of her father, King Oberon - who was gravely injured defending Meghan from the Iron Fey. Yet Meghan and Ash's detour does not go unnoticed. They have caught the attention of an ancient, powerful hunter - a foe that even Ash may not be able to defeat.

So this is a short quick little interlude between stories… there was a lot of reiteration of stuff that happened in the first book. If it’s been a while since you read Iron King (#1) then this would be a nice little refresher for you. I had just finished Iron King though so the reiteration was a little, well, repetitive. 🙂

This story is about Ash taking Meghan back to his Queen in accordance with their agreement and the introduction of yet another elusive creature following her; the Hunter (Or the self-proclaimed Wolf from Little Red Riding Hood. Yeah… okay. lol) Grimalkin joins them on their journey as well, and I don’t know why but I love Grim. Although when I envision the story as it progresses, I imagine Grimalkin looks like the white fluffy Fancy Feast cat for some reason. lol

Of course since Grim is supposed to be a ‘faery cat’ (whatever that means) I’m sure that’s not the case. But to me, that’s Grim. Grim and his Fancy Feast.

As far as Ash and Meghan go… as much as I love Ash, the storyline is getting old. Boy likes girl, girl likes boy… they’re not supposed to like each other, it’s not allowed, but they just can’t help it! So boy acts like he cares, but wait! Boy turns into a prick faster than a speeding bullet! Come on… *sigh* I’m still a sucker for these books and will keep reading this series. This mini-book actually made me more interested in the series overall so that works, mainly because I’m interested to see what happens once they actually reach the Winter Court and what all these weird dreams are all about.

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