CLICK HERE FOR BLOGGER TEMPLATES AND MYSPACE LAYOUTS »

October Releases

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

ARC Review: Ascension (Dark Breed #1) by Sable Grace

Author: Sable Grace
Series: Dark Breed
Number in Series: 1
Format: Ebook (EPUB)
Pages: 269
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: May 01, 2011
Genre: Urban Fantasy
















Synopsis from Goodreads


The gates of hell have opened, and one woman will stand in the crossfire as the Dark Breed—vampyre, demons, shape shifters—and mankind fight their last battle for survival.
Kyana is half Vampyre, half Lychen . . . and the last of her kind. Determined, dangerous, and damned, she has no love for the mortals who have imprisoned and misused her. But when the Order of Ancients entrusts her with a mission—to find the key that will send the Dark Breed back into Hell for eternity—Kyana has no choice but to accept.
She is furious to learn her assignment comes with an escort . . . Ryker, a demigod and fierce warrior who long ago found a way under her skin and stayed there. In a shaky alliance, they discover an ancient cult with dangerous motive and a god who seeks to destroy all others. And as Kyana begins to feel the heat that threatens to bind her to Ryker, she knows she has to resist. For it could only mean the undoing of them both...



     Wow! Thanks to the amazing Netgalley, I came across this amazing book. This is such a great start to this new series and I am glad to say I can't wait for more. There are so many different things that I loved about this book. It is full of action, vampires, werewolves, gods and has one of the most kickass heroines in the world.

      Ascension is about a half Vampyre, half Lycan woman named Kyana. Kyana was sent on a mission by the goddess Artemis to find a woman named Jordan. Jordan was nearly beaten to death and Kyana finds out that she is suppose to be one of the Chosen. The Chosen are special humans who are to replace the gods who are slowly but surely loosing their powers as the prophecy says. To make things more difficult, the door to Tartarus (Hell) has been opened and it is literally Hell on Earth (or Above) and that is why Jordan and other Chosen are being left for dead. So when Kyana finds out that the Chosen are being picked off one by one, it is up to Kyana to find out who has the key to Hell and who is having the Chosen and humans alike killed.

     But to make this feat even more harder, Artemis has made Kyana work with a very sexy demigod named Ryker. Ryker and Kyana have history, which is something very unique with paranormal romance. About ten years ago, Kyana really wanted Ryker and he refused her and they have disliked each other since. Thing is Ryker does want Kyana, always have, his father however, is a crazy, unforgiving bastard and just happens to be Ares, the God of War. So while battling monsters, they will be battling each other.
 
    Well I have to say, this is one of my favorite books so far this year. This book is a great mixture of Greek mythology, Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance. This is set in a post-apocalyptic world full of humans (who are going extinct), vampires, demons, werewolves, gods and zombies. There was plenty of action on Earth (Above) and Below (just below Earth) throughout the book. From the first chapter on, this book really starts with lots of complexity and the more it goes, the turns this book takes are insane.

     Besides the amazing storyline, the characters are incredible. Kyana is one of my favorite heroines ever. I said this before, but she is very macho for a woman. She is the ultimate badass. She has a tendency on doing things before thinking about it and that gets her into more trouble, but it makes for an ever more fun story. She is also a very complicated and tortured character. When we learn about her past and the things she has endured, we begin to understand why she is the way she is. Ryker is a great character. He is a hottie that actually kicks ass in ugly Hawaiian t-shirts and flip-flops, I mean he does dress normally sometimes, but that is an image I will never get out of my head. Kyana's closest friends, Haven and Geoffrey, were amazing especially Geoffrey, he was my favorite in this book. Haven was cute and perky. Oh and she is a witch. Geoffrey is a vampire who had a way of knowing things before anyone. Honestly, parts of this book wouldn't have moved if not for Geoff's Intel. Also, he is really funny, so he really lightened the mood sometimes in the book.

    If you are looking for a well put together and spectacular Urban Fantasy story, I would recommend this book to you. It is suspenseful, action-packed, full of Greek mythology, and with plenty of twists and turns to keep you on your toes. Book 2 can't get here fast enough! Highly recommended, so make sure you pick this up come May 1st!



Rating:





*This book belongs to the following challenges*
BCC's Horror & Urban Fantasy Reading Challenge 2011
Parajunkee's View Vampire Challenge 2011

Monday, April 25, 2011

Eternal Rider Giveaway Winner!

And the winner is....

Victoria


Congratulations Victoria, you are the lucky winner of the Eternal Rider giveaway. You have been sent an email, please respond within 48 hours with your information. BIG thanks to all who participated. Hope to see everyone soon.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Review: Glass Houses (The Morganville Vampires #1) by Rachel Caine

Author: Rachel Caine
Series: The Morganville Vampires
Number in Series: 1
Format: Audiobook
Time: 8 hrs. and 43 mins.
Narrator: Cynthia Holloway
Release Date: October 3, 2006 (audiobook September 28, 2009)
Publisher: NAL Jam
Genre: Young Adult/Urban Fantasy










 Synopsis from Goodreads


From the author of the popular Weather Warden series comes the debut of an exciting new series set in Morganville, Texas, where you would be well advised to avoid being out after dark.

College freshman Claire Danvers has had enough of her nightmarish dorm situation. When Claire heads off-campus, the imposing old house where she finds a room may not be much better. Her new roommates don't show many signs of life, but they'll have Claire's back when the town's deepest secrets come crawling out, hungry for fresh blood.



     I haven’t read too many Young Adult books especially ones that are Urban Fantasy. But I wanted to get into this because I have heard a lot of things about it, read reviews ranging from 1 to 5 stars, and Rachel Caine is quite a big name in Urban Fantasy. So I gave this a try. I am happy I did even though I had some issues with it. I enjoyed it and once I finished it, I immediately placed a hold on book 2 (still waiting unfortunately).
  
     Glass Houses is about a 16 (almost 17) year old teenage girl named Claire Danvers. Claire is quite the genius which is why she is a college freshman at her age. So as though being a 16 year old in college isn’t hard enough, Claire has a bully. A bully surrounded by friends who would do anything for her. So one day Claire is walking down the hall and passes the bully named Monica who has her history mixed up and Claire just corrects her on it. No maliciousness, no yanking her chain at all, just letting Monica she has her wars mixed up. Monica doesn’t take this lightly, however. In order to pay Claire back for her “embarrassment”, Monica shoves Claire down a flight of stairs. And Monica makes it clear that it was just the beginning.

      As you can imagine, Claire is now frightened to go back to the campus because she knows Monica and her puppets will kill her. So Claire sets out to find somewhere else to live and she stumbles on an old house with two guys and girl. They are close knit which gives Claire second thoughts, but she needs a place to go since she is far from home. After finally being allowed to live in the house for at least three months, Claire finds out that she was lucky because Morganville seems to be a weirder small town than she thought.  The creepiness she felt before getting into the house wasn’t an illusion because Morganville is run by vampires. And it just so happens, those protected from vampires are those she really wishes she hadn’t met.

     I enjoyed this book. The characters from the actual house were all fun and different. First, there is Eve who Claire meets first before entering the house. Eve is this gothic chick who is not as crazy as she seems. Then there is Shane, the hot guy who is really laid back and carefree. He is the take action, think later type and this makes him seem dense in the book, but I don’t think he truly is. Then there is Mr. Glass himself, Michael. He is the owner of the house who has some very suspicious sleeping habits. He is always asleep in the morning and shows up at night. He has a secret none of them know about, not even his best friend Shane who he took into the house first.  The one confusing character for me was the main antagonist, Monica. I am not sure why or how she is able to get away with so much. I mean she is protected, but I feel like there is something I am missing. Protected or not, the things she does and gets away with are quite overwhelming. So I am hoping I can find out more about her.

    Now I did have issues with this book, I won’t lie. For instance, the whole reason for Claire’s turmoil was so juvenile; I couldn’t believe this is how it all started for her. I find it hard to imagine this book is set in college.  I honestly thought of a high school hallway, not a college dorm. I am not saying there aren’t immature college students, but Monica starts this one-sided war over the dumbest thing. It may be an abuse of power, but jeez, the amount of energy she put into not only making Claire miserable, but actually trying to kill her, is utterly insane.  

    My next issue is our main character Claire. Claire is supposed to be a genius; she wants to go to MIT and all, which is great. But she makes some incredibly dumb decisions in this book that made me want to slap the hell out her. She knows Monica has the entire town in her palm, but she doesn’t want to miss school and risks her life and goes back twice to class and each time, something happens to her. I like school too (I know, I am a nerd), but my life is definitely more important than my grades and I am surprised Claire wasn’t genius enough to figure that out. Then again, I guess being 16 and away from home for the first time with no life experience causes you to do some dumb things.

    Her roommates were my favorite part of this book though. Eve made me smile and she had the tough girl persona, but she was sweet deep down. Michael was my favorite. Hot guitar player is always a win. He was so against Claire coming into the house because she was underage, but overtime, he treats her like a sister. Shane was a lot of fun and he becomes the love interest in the book. He is the one that takes a huge step to save Claire which leads to a much bigger build in the storyline.

    I love the world of Glass Houses and the surprises that we get throughout the book.  The last couple of chapters really had me on the edge of my seat. The cliffhanger left my mouth hanging wide open which is why I am in a rush for book 2, Dead Girls’ Dance. Freaking libraries. Nonetheless, even though the story starts off very high school, it ended on a high note (well technically, you’ll get it once you read it). It is recommended for those looking for a unique YA Urban Fantasy. But be warned: some teenage brains are involved.


Rating:
 



*This book belongs to the following challenges:*
BCC's Horror & Urban Fantasy Reading Challenge 2011
Parajunkee's View Vampire Challenge 2011

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Movie Review: Hanna (2011)



Synopsis from IMDB

Hanna (Ronan) is a teenage girl. Uniquely, she has the strength, the stamina, and the smarts of a soldier; these come from being raised by her father (Bana), an ex-CIA man, in the wilds of Finland. Living a life unlike any other teenager, her upbringing and training have been one and the same, all geared to making her the perfect assassin. The turning point in her adolescence is a sharp one; sent into the world by her father on a mission, Hanna journeys stealthily across Europe while eluding agents dispatched after her by a ruthless intelligence operative with secrets of her own (Ms. Blanchett). As she nears her ultimate target, Hanna faces startling revelations about her existence and unexpected questions about her humanity.




    This is one of those films that came out of nowhere really. It wasn't well marketed and it is a shame because this movie kicked a lot of ass. It was more than I expected. It is a shame it didn’t make number one in the box office because it really deserved it.

     Now I missed the first couple of minutes of this movie (being the only person buying snacks for everybody sucks). But from where I started about five minutes in, I know I didn’t miss much, obviously. Hanna starts off with a father named Erik (Eric Bana) teaching his teenage daughter, Hanna (Saoirse Ronan) how to defend herself. And not the stuff you would learn from some self-defense class for women. He works his daughter to the bone. Erik teaches her to dismantle and kill, teaches her multiple languages and gives her an alternate identity to explain where she came from if she was found.  Erik knows Hanna is growing up and knows that she will want to explore the world. They may be on the run hiding from people (well a person) who wants to kill him and Hanna because of a secret. Yet Erik gives Hanna the option of staying or leaving and being a teenager, of course, she chooses to leave. But she doesn’t get time to celebrate her newfound independence.

      Quickly after notifying the government of where she is, Erik makes a run for it and sets up where he and Hanna are to meet. Hanna is taken to an undisclosed located underground and is investigated by the government to find out where she was and where her father is. Hanna knows the woman behind it all, Marissa Wiegler (Cate Blanchett), and knows that Marissa is the one she must take down.  Marissa (Blanchett) is a ruthless, obsessive compulsive intelligence operative who is harboring a secret that Hanna doesn’t know about. She knows who Hanna really is and where she came from and that is why she needs to kill her because others found out about her experiments, things will go bad. Marissa is so determined she also hires someone to help, a man named Issacs (Tom Hollander), who was just as ruthless as her and goes on a killing spree taking down everyone that has been in contact with anyone who has seen Hanna. This was the weirdest thing to me in this movie. Issacs always seemed dressed for a tennis match, wearing shorts I didn’t think a man would be caught dead in, but like the cliché says, looks are deceiving.

        I absolutely enjoyed this movie. It was such an amazing thriller. I like seeing a film that can be both action/thriller and yet at times quite lighthearted. When Hanna actually escapes (after finding out something her DNA is abnormal) and makes it out into the real world, her reaction to people and technology was crazy. She meets this family that takes her in and watches out for her even though they are suspicious. Hanna quickly learns plenty from a funny and very, very talkative girl, Sophie (Jessica Barden), who quickly becomes best friends with Hanna.  One of my favorite scenes in this movie was when Hanna and Sophie visit a bonfire where people are singing and dancing and they are both with two guys. Hanna asks the guy if she is supposed to kiss him now and she talks about all the muscles involved in kissing, but instead of kissing him, she throws him down on the ground and tells him thanks for the good time. It was so random and unexpected, but I was happy they that because it still showed she is out of her element and doesn’t quite trust anyone yet still.

       The fight scenes in this movie were good, some could have been better. I don’t know, but sometimes it seems a split second or two was missing when there was the hand-to-hand combat, but it was great to watch. Hanna took down grown men so easily; you couldn’t help but cheer her on. Marissa though always seemed to be right behind Hanna, so it was short lived because they were both so determined, you really didn’t know who was going to win in the end.

        Overall this was a kickass movie. I am trying my best not reveal too much even though you might figure out enough about Hanna and what she is. This film was about a girl who doesn’t know what she is and questions her own humanity. Hanna’s journey is quite the rollercoaster that should be explored by all. Also there is Cate Blanchett, one of my favorite actresses in the world. The woman can play anybody and you know you are getting 100% and that was no exception here. My only complaint in this movie was the ending. I expected a little more bang at the end, but it didn’t suck and that is what matters. Nonetheless, if you want an awesome movie (with an even more awesome soundtrack, thanks to the Chemical Brothers, the soundtrack was incredible) that is full of action and mystery and surprisingly, some laughs, this is the film for you.
    

Rating:

Sunday, April 17, 2011

KLB Virtual Events Book Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway of Eternal Rider by Larissa Ione


*Giveaway is now closed*



Welcome to Day 7 of the Eternal Rider Book Tour. Thanks to the wonderful ladies at the new KLB Virtual Events (also check to see the other amazing blogs that participated). I have been asked to participate in a book blog tour featuring one of the most amazing authors in the PNR world, Larissa Ione. Please check out my review and for a chance to win this great book.


**********************************************************


Author: Larissa Ione
Series: Lords of Deliverance
Number in Series: One
Format: Paperback
Pages: 402
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Release Date: March 29, 2011
Genre:  Paranormal Romance













Synopsis from Goodreads
 

They are here. They ride. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

His name is Ares, and the fate of mankind rests on his powerful shoulders. If he falls to the forces of evil, the world falls too. As one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, he is far stronger than any mortal, but even he cannot fight his destiny forever. Not when his own brother plots against him.

Yet there is one last hope. Gifted in a way other humans can't-or won't-understand, Cara Thornhart is the key to both this Horseman's safety and his doom. But involving Cara will prove treacherous, even beyond the maddening, dangerous desire that seizes them the moment they meet. For staving off eternal darkness could have a staggering cost: Cara's life.





     Well through luck I was approached by the awesome Tigris Eden and I quickly jumped on board. I wanted to be in my first book tour ever and what better way to do that than with my all my awesome bookloving Tweeps. And man was I happy to get my hands on another great book by one of the most amazing authors in the PNR world, Larissa Ione. Her talent for storytelling has once again proven why she is so beloved in the book world.

     Eternal Rider is about the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, well pre-Apocalypse. You see all the Horsemen (three men and one woman=Reseph, Ares, Thantos, and Limos, all siblings) have been cursed. All of them were given an agimortus, a Seal that possesses their destiny on whether they will be good or evil. If these Seals are to break, they will become what we know as the Four Horsemen; War, Famine, Pestilence, and Death.

      The agimortus can be anything, an object or otherwise. But unfortunately, Reseph (Pestilence) was the first Seal broken after him and his siblings were attacked by hellhounds that were sent to take them out, the only creatures that can hurt the Horsemen. So after the sweet and caring Reseph has become Pestilence, Ares is in a fight against time to find an fallen angel (after his was killed by Pestilence) who can possess his agimortus before Pestilence can get to it because Pestilence wants the Apocalyse. If Pestilence does, Ares will become War, making the Apocalypse imminent.

      Then we meet Cara, a human who with a very special power who has a very interesting dog thrown on at her doorstep. After saving this pup, quickly named Hal, she is immediately tracked by the Aegis, supposed good guys who are trying to stop the Apocalypse, but go about it a different way. Cara has no idea what is going on and being called a demon, she believes the Aegis are crazy enough to kill her. Until she is rescued by Ares, but things take a turn when he finds out she is bonded to the hellhound she saved. After we find out the who and why of the hellhounds presence, Cara is given the agimortus. Thing is, only fallen angels can have it without dying and even so, whoever has it, Pestilence wants it so he can bring the world to an end. So they are in a race to find someone a fallen angel to take possession of the agimortus before the fallen angels and Cara are all dead.

     I absolutely loved this book. The characters are one of many things to love about this book. Ares is a very complex man. He is haunted by his past when he was human and the tragedy he faced. Even though it has been thousands of years, he still holds himself responsible. But even though he is haunted, he allows himself to fall for Cara and his conflicts over him being a warrior or a man made me want to punch him sometimes, but I understood him.

    Cara is one of my favorite leading ladies. She is not a gun-slinging, sword-swinging badass chick in tight leather pants. She is frightened because she has been thrown in the middle of the war of wars and she has become the key of whether the world will fall or not. Yet with all of that on her shoulders, she sucks it up and pushes forward. She does what she must to survive and she makes sure no one backs her into a corner, whether it be Ares or his siblings. She isn't one of the immortal horsemen, her life might be cut very very short soon, but she takes them all in stride and didn't let anyone bully her into anything. That is why I loved her.

    Now it isn't 100% critical for you to read the amazing Demonica series by Larissa Ione to understand this book, but it is 100% highly recommended because Ione is awesome. Though when (no if here because I know you will), you will notice the amount of cameos in this book. From some of our favorite Aegis to some of our sweet and sexy demons, we get a little from all the books in Eternal Rider.

     Overall, if you haven't started a book by Larissa Ione, I don't know what you are waiting for. This book is very sexy, innovate, and addictive. Ione has created a world full of action that pulls you in from page 1. The way she builds a different world is just too amazing for words. This is a book that truly shouldn't be missed and is a book I will be reading over and over. And knowing we have to wait until December for book 2, Immortal Rider, just makes me even more glad that this it will be the perfect Christmas present. Read this book!



Rating:





*Giveaway Time*

Now I know you would love this in your hands, you know you would. So I am giving away a copy of Eternal Rider to one lucky winner. Read below for what you have to do and the guidelines

1) Must be over 18 for this book, this is not for kids.
2) Please leave a comment with your email address.
3) Share this by Tweet/Facebook/Blog, etc and please leave link for an extra entry.


That is it. Also please take note:
*Contest ends on April 24th at 11:59 pm, winner will be announced April 25th.

*Book will be sent where Book Depository ships, please check here to see if you're listed.

*Winner will be chosen randomly and will be given 48 hours to respond. If they have not, next in line will get the prize.


Good Luck Everyone!!!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Review: Lover Unleashed (Black Dagger Brotherhood #9) by J.R. Ward

Author: J. R. Ward
Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood
Number in Series: 9
Format: Kindle
Pages: 489
Publisher: Penguin Group
Release Date: March 29, 2011
Genre: Erotica/Paranormal Romance











Synopsis from Goodreads


Payne, twin sister of Vishous, is cut from the same dark, warrior cloth as her brother: A fighter by nature, and a maverick when it comes to the traditional role of Chosen females, there is no place for her on the Far Side… and no role for her on the front lines of the war, either.

When she suffers a paralyzing injury, human surgeon Dr. Manuel Manello is called in to treat her as only he can- and he soon gets sucked into her dangerous, secret world. Although he never before believed in things that go bump in the night- like vampires- he finds himself more than willing to be seduced by the powerful female who marks both his body and his soul.

As the two find so much more than an erotic connection, the human and vampire worlds collide … just as a centuries old score catches up with Payne and puts both her love and her life in deadly jeopardy.



     The Black Dagger Brotherhood are back. After the nearly year long wait, having this book in my hands definitely calmed my nerves. But the wait is finally over and I am happy to report, it was worth it.


      This book immediately begins in the middle of a war. We are actually introduced to new vampires, the Anti-Brotherhood if you will. They are about slaughtering lessers and humans alike for sport. Bloodletter, the leader of the Anti-Brotherhood, has been murdered by a woman who pops out of nowhere. His son and second in command, Xcor (who scares me shitless by the way), is pissed by what he has seen and does not want anyone outside his group of bastards to tell the world his dad was taken down by a woman. This is where Xcor starts his 250 year hunt 


     Then we end up in the modern day. Since we know that Payne is paralyzed from the waist down, Jane needs to do something to save her. The only person that can save her though is Manny, a gorgeous doctor in the human world whose brain has already been fiddled with by the vampires. Also who was in love with Jane and is still yearning for her a year after her death. So when she finally gets into the human world (after Vishous's bitchiness), surprising Manny with her not-so-dead appearance, Manny is less than pleased, but will do anything for a patient. Of course, Manny falls for Payne pretty quickly and Payne falls for him just as fast. But Vishous doesn't like it one bit and this is what sends him in a downward spiral.


      I absolutely loved this book. I couldn't put it down. Although that doesn't go without saying there were some things that were different about this book. Not complaining mind you, but the format was different in this book. For instance, in the other books all the other books usually follow about two stories/characters and our main bad guy (sometimes three). But in this book, we have about four or five different stories going. It isn't bad, but it is quite different.


     In Lover Unleashed, we are given more of Vishous' story and like other have said (and is quite true), this was like part 2 of Vishous' story. But not given him a big story in this wouldn't make sense in my opinion. After all, he is about to lose his sister, Payne, who he just discovered existed in his 300 years of life. But I like where it went. I like that he started breaking down walls between him and Jane and trying to work pass his tragic past. But we do get plenty of Manny and Payne. Really loved Manny, he was smart and hot and really pulled through for Payne. Payne was amazing. I loved her mannerisms. She was stuck in the old days and had such an innocence about her, yet she had the ability to tear anyone to shreds. She was a favorite for me.


    Also in this book, we don't follow a main bad guy, a lesser usually. We are following Xcor and his band of vampires. Xcor has a grudge, wants to destroy the woman who killed his dad and wants to take down Wrath and get his throne. But this story takes a turn and I am not sure where it is going to go, but I can tell you, it is going to get ugly.


    We get more og Qhuinn in this book, which was great, but very sad. He is basically killing himself over what went down between him and Blay. It is very sad. We also find that Qhuinn has a special talent and sees something that both makes sense and is confusing, If you read it, then you know what I am saying (I hope). 


    Another book I am more than happy to talk about forever, but I won't give so much away. I loved this book so much. It was a great addition to the series. Although I wish we got more lesser battles. I wanted a little more of Manny and Payne, but the book is nonetheless well balanced, it doesn't feel like it is dragging. I am also very happy that we got more characters that I am very interested in, specifically Throe and Thomas Del Vecchio Jr. Can't wait to get to their stories. Overall, this is highly recommended for any Black Dagger Brotherhood fan. The characters were as amazing as ever and this book was full of some surprises I didn't see coming. Also the ending will leave you smiling, well I was laughing because it was such a great moment. Lover Unleashed will not disappoint. 




Rating:






*This belongs to the following reading challenge*
Parajunkee's View Vampire Challenge 2011

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Review: Etched in Bone (The Maker's Song #4) by Adrian Phoenix

Author: Adrian Phoenix
Series: The Maker's Song
Number in Series: 4
Format: Paperback
Pages: 382
Publisher: Pocket
Release Date: February 22, 2011
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance











Synopsis from Goodreads


SON OF A FALLEN ANGEL. FORGED IN VAMPIRE’S BLOOD. SWORN TO A MORTAL WOMAN. IF DANTE FALLS, THE WORLD FALLS WITH HIM. . . . THREE LEGACIES ETCHED IN BONE
More beautiful and powerful than any creature the world has ever seen, Dante Baptiste has become the supreme target of the three worlds that spawned him. The mortal agents of the Shadow Branch have tried to control his mind through psychological torture. The vampire elders who guide nightkind society have plotted to use him in their bloodthirsty bid for power. And the Fallen have waited for millennia for Dante to claim his birthright as their Maker. But Dante belongs to no one—except the woman he loves. . . .
ONE PASSION SWORN IN BLOOD
Determined to face the Fallen and the world on his own terms, Dante hopes to piece together his shattered past and claim his future, with FBI agent Heather Wallace at his side. But in Heather’s human family awaits an unexpected enemy. One who could rip Heather from Dante’s heart and fill the holes with bullets. One who could force Dante to choose his darkest destiny—as the Great Destroyer.



     I finished this book last week, I know, once again, slow. But Lover Unleashed took up the time after that. It was my main focus, so this way, I can have two reviews back-to-back. This book was full of more action, more of the amazing characters we know and all (and a couple of new ones) and, of course, another fantastic storyline. Absolutely incredible from start to finish. This is one of my favorite series by one of my favorite authors and it definitely didn't disappoint.

     Etched in Bone starts off as a flashback that within a few paragraphs had me cursing. We find out that Heather's and Annie's father, Special Agent James William Wallace, decides to make an appearance. He is "saving" his girls from the mind-controlling vampires who have "stolen" Heather's will. Obviously we know different, but James being the world's most terrible dad makes things even worse when he brings some heavy backup to kidnap his daughters and kill all their friends including Dante. When the first two chapter ends, we are given quite a few shocks and surprises that are a great start for this book.

    We then end up in the past by three days right before Dante literally punches a hole to a different universe. Dante and Heather are being stalked by the great and drunk Shadow Branch chief, Sam Gillepsie who is still making plans to kill Dante. Then we get to where the last book left off and that is in Gehenna. Dante is both adored and feared in Gehenna and he is trying to save his friend (and just discovered father) Lucien. This is where we meet the other angels of Gehenna who want to keep him as prisoner to save their world. In a way I feel bad for them, but they are really going about it the wrong way. They expect him to do it now, but Lucien along with others have warned them on how he will be treated. 


    This series just gets more complicated by the page and I found it hard to put down especially when we get insight to one of the villains, Dion. Dion has the ability to erase memories and plant new ones and when it suits him or Shadow Branch, he causes aneurysms in the brain that erupt at the same time. I thought he was scary before, but getting into his head, just freaked me out that much more.


    We also get more of the gang, not as much of the big and sexy Von as I would like. But then given what happened at the end of book 3, Beneath The Skin, his spark was sort of dulled. Also we get a small surprise about what happened to Heather's mom. Now in the book, we are told it was from her bond from Dante and that is why she saw a certain man's face (not spoiling), but I have the sinking suspicion that it wasn't the case.

    Nonetheless, I could talk about this book forever. It was so well written, of course given that Phoenix is uber talented, and so complex. We are introduced to some new characters, given some surprises that had me screaming and the ending was quite the cliffhanger. Highly recommend this series. Do not try reading from the middle, start from the beginning because you will be lost for sure if you don't. But if you want a series full of action, mystery, suspense, romance, vampires, not so nice angels and insane government conspiracies, this is the series for you.




Rating:






*This book belongs to the following challenges:*
BCC's Horror & Urban Fantasy Reading Challenge 2011 
Parajunkee's View Vampire Challenge 2011 

Sunday, April 10, 2011

New Cover News! Envy (The Fallen Angels #3)




As the son of a serial killer, homicide detective Thomas “Veck” DelVecchio, Jr., grew up in the shadow of evil. Now, on the knife-edge between civic duty and blind retribution, he atones for the sins of his father—while fighting his inner demons. Assigned to monitor Veck is Internal Affairs officer Sophia Reilly, whose interest in him is both professional and arousingly personal. And Veck and Sophia have another link: Jim Heron, a mysterious stranger with too many answers...to questions that are deadly. When Veck and Sophia are drawn into the ultimate battle between good and evil, their fallen angel savior is the only thing that stands between them and eternal damnation.


   This is my first one of these, but that is only because I am always catching new things late. But I was so exciting seeing this. I love this series and I can't wait for book 3. Although I must say, the cover is a bit different from the others. See?



 I don't know, just seems almost like it belongs to a different series. The others are dark, sexy, and badass. The new one? Not feeling badass so much or dark. Guy is cute, but not like the others for me.

    But I am super excited to see Thomas DelVecchio get his own story. For those that don't know, he is a new cop added in Lover Unleashed, just came across his character yesterday. I am definitely intrigued. Release date is supposed to be September 6, 2011. Calendar has been marked. It is J.R. Ward, so cover or not, I know the words inside will be worth the money.

   What do you guys think? Like the cover or they should have kept with the format?

Top 5 Sunday - Favorite Character Names



Rules:
  1. Write a post listing your TOP 5 choices within the theme I chose (or was chosen on a poll) for the week.
  2. Mention this Blog on the post and link back to it.
  3. Fell free to use the Feature's image (there is a smaller size version of it bellow)
  4. After you've finished your post, add you link (of the post, not your blog's main page) to the Mr.Linky at the end of that week's post.
  5. If you don’t have a blog to post, just leave your list in the comments =)

**********************************************************

I have always been a fan of names from books. So hopefully my list will be awesome. *in no particular order*


Male Names:
1. Jeff Martini from Katherine "Kitty" Katt series 
It is just a sexy name, I can't help it. Hello, Mr. Martini LOL!

2. Drustan MacKeltar from Highlander series (Kiss of the Highlander)
I always had a thing for the Scottish and fell in love with the name pretty quickly.

3. Rehvenge/Rehv/The Reverend from Black Dagger Brotherhood series (Lover Avenged)
I love all the names from the BDB, they are pretty unique and fun and besides Zsadist, the Reverend is a favorite.

4. Bones/Crispin from Night Huntress series
One of the world's most beloved vampires (in my opinion) and his name and real name are just very cool to me.

5. Jericho Barrons from Fever series
Not only one of my favorite names, but one of my favorite male leads. Barrons is just too amazing for words.


Female Names:
1. Mercedes (Mercy) Thompson from Mercedes Thompson series
Great character, great name. Tough chick named Mercy is just fitting.

2. Katherine "Kitty" Katt from Katherine "Kitty" Katt series
Too much fun to say.

3. Dante Valentine from Dante Valentine series
Really interesting name for a woman.

4. October "Toby" Daye from October Daye series
Always cool finding a chick named October LOL!


5. Sabina Kane from Sabina Kane series
Another great name from another great series.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Review: Source Code (2011)






Colter Stevens an American Army helicopter pilot whose last memory is flying in Afgasnistan, wakes up on a commuter train. But he discovers he has assumed the identity of another man. 8 minutes later the train explodes and Stevens finds himself in some kind of pod. He then talks to someone named Goodwin who tells him he has to go back and find who the bomber is. He is sent back and is going through the whole thing again and tries to find who the bomber is but fails and the bomb goes off and he is back in the pod. He is sent back again and still can't find out anything. When he comes back he asks what is going on, Goodwin and Rutledge, the scientist in charge tells him he is part of a project that can put someone in another person's consciousness during the last 8 minutes of their life. Stevens says why doesn't he just stop the bomb, he is then told that he is not going back in time but placed in the moment so he can find out who the bomber is and if there are any other targets.




     I saw this film immediately after Insidious, so I was still on a spooky high if you will. So going into this, I expected to see an on-the-edge-of-my-seat action flick, but surprisingly, that is not what this movie is about. As a matter of fact, this movie went past that, it was science fiction mixed with faith. No this isn't some religious film or anything, no Jesus squad, just a film that tests the perception of time and space. And you know what, they did a damn good job on it.

    Source Code doesn't waste anytime getting right into what we know of the film. A man, a soldier named Captain Colter Stevens wakes up on a train, does not know anything besides his name and finds out he does not look like how he should. After a huge explosion, he finds himself in a metal chamber of some kind and finds out that his subconscious has been "linked up" to a passenger on board the train that crashed earlier that day, which means that passenger is dead. So even though the mission is to catch a crazy terrorist, Captain Stevens is also on a mission to see if he can contact the other side even though he is in the past.

    Now I won't lie, when I saw the trailer to this, I wrote this off as a Deja Vu ripoff. Now I am a fan of both the leading men of these movies, but Deja Vu just wasn't a favorite, so I wrote it off. But I did give it a chance and I am very happy I did. We get science fiction to a different degree. 

    One thing that is worth bragging (and sort of laughing at if you are me) is the storyline. It is great, but as I have heard many say and what I thought, the film is a sci-fi take to Groundhog Day. Now if you have never seen Groundhog Day, I feel sorry for you because it is an amazing movie and very funny. Also the world wouldn't be right without Bill Murray. But it is done not only with a more sci-fi aspect, there is also a little twist we didn't see coming and just makes the movie that more intriguing and complex.

    Overall, watch this movie. I apologize for judging it to quickly and I am proud I gave it a chance. One of the few very touching sci-fi films I have seen. If you want to spend money at the theaters, this is a pretty safe bet.


Rating:

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Movie Review: Insidious (2011)




A family looks to prevent evil spirits from trapping their comatose child in a realm called The Further.



    Well I am just going to come out and say it. This is one of the creepiest films I have seen since the original Shutter. Seriously, I nearly shit my pants when watching this. I was happy with this since James Wan directed it, the same guy who directed the very first Saw (one of two Saw films worth watching). I have seen so many ghost stories to last a lifetime and a lot of them just fall flat. This actually scared me to the point of actually jumping out of my seat.

   Insidious immediately gets you into the creepiness from the get go. A growing family of a mom, dad, two little boys and a new baby girl move into a new and big beautiful house. And from day one, strange things start taking place. Things start moving and falling to the floor for no apparent reason. So on one seemingly ordinary day, the second oldest of the boys, Dalton, goes up to the attic (always a creepy attic). He is playing Superhero and falls off a broken ladder, but while down, he sees something that we don't see at first. He has a huge bruise on his head and next thing we find out, he is in a coma for three months.

   While in a coma, the strange things get worse in the house and they agree to move because they think the house is haunted. When they get to the new house, they find that whatever was in the old house, followed them. They quickly find out something is wrong with Dalton through the dad's, Josh, mother and they call in people to help. An old lady and her goofy, but efficient, assistants that find evidence that it is not the houses that are haunted, but their son. But they want him because he has a very special ability.

   I loved this movie. It was different from ghost stories because there is an actual reason why Dalton is being haunted. Most ghost stories don't give you a reason, just say that person is special, but we don't know why they are special. This actually gives us a reason. I also like that the movie isn't the usual, modern day film. When watching this, I felt like I was watching one of those great old ghost stories from back in the 70s. If Poltergeist was a favorite for you, than you will appreciate this movie even more.

    Now that doesn't go without saying that this movie definitely had its share of problems. For instance, about the last third of the movie wasn't as scary as it should have been. I don't want to spoil it, but there were scenes that were scary, but others that they didn't play up like they could have been. But the very ending of the film definitely left my mouth hanging open, but not everyone liked it. I on the other hand have no problem with it. Another thing was when we meet the main ghost/demon that was haunting Dalton, he wasn't all that creepy. He looked like a man in makeup, clear in simple. There was one scene where we actually see his face for the first time and I won't lie, I nearly jumped out of my seat.

    Overall, this was a great film. It may not be for everyone, but as I said, it actually scared me. It is great to finally see a scary film that is actually scary and doesn't even have a lot of blood in it which was refreshing. Again going back to the old days, barely or virtually no blood, gore, and pointless sex (not complaining mind you) just a good story with good acting. So do not miss this movie if you are actually looking for a scare.


Rating:


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Movie Review: Paul (2011)


Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead) reunite for the comedy adventure Paul as two sci-fi geeks whose pilgrimage takes them to America's UFO heartland. While there, they accidentally meet an alien who brings them on an insane road trip that alters their universe forever. For the past 60 years, an alien named Paul (voiced by Seth Rogen) has been hanging out at a top-secret military base. When he discovers he's been taken prisoner, the space-traveling smart ass decides to escape the compound and hop on the first vehicle out of town-a rented RV containing Earthlings Graeme Willy (Pegg) and Clive Gollings (Frost). Chased by federal agents and the fanatical father of a young woman that they accidentally kidnap, Graeme and Clive hatch a fumbling escape plan to return Paul to his mother ship. And as two nerds struggle to help, one little green man might just take his fellow outcasts from misfits to intergalactic heroes.


     Ok, so I watched this films about a week or two ago. I know I shouldn't wait long, but the books have held my attention and that is a great excuse. Nonetheless, it is time I finally type this out because it has been bugging me, well my laziness that is. Anyway, I want to say this was a great movie, but it is a movie that isn't for everyone.

     Paul is about two nerds from England who want to take a huge America roadtrip to all of America's known alien hotspots. But you can't go on a nerd roadtrip without visiting Comic Con, which is where it all started. While on the trip and they come across a pair of hillbillies that want to kick their asses because they are nerds (sad they were grown men). Nonetheless, while running from said hillbillies, they end up witnessing an accident. When they get out to help, they come across Paul. An actual, real-life alien who was being held by the military for 60 years and finally escaped and needed to get home. They find out that what they thought about aliens wasn't exactly what the movies and tv shows portrayed them as. For instance, apparently aliens don't know Klingon.

    While on the run from an overzealous FBI agent and two other agents who were more like kids than anything else, they are also being hunted down by a woman's, Ruth (played by Kristen Wiig), dad who believes his daughter has been kidnapped by the devil. They were crazy Jesus freaks, but funny.

    Well I for one loved this movie. Being a nerd, it spoke to me. It will not be for everyone though. If a movie about nerds being chased by the FBI because they were hiding an alien in their RV, this won't be for you. But for everyone else, it was awesome.

     Overall this movie is hilarious and most shockingly, quite heartwarming. And, of course, any alien-based movie will not be complete without Sigourney Weaver who made a fun appearance in this movie. I love how Paul was the very inspiration for the world's most popular alien, E.T. I would have loved it if Steven Spielberg made an actual appearance in this movie, would have been fun. I know this is short, but hey, all I can say this movie was worth watching and it isn't as funny as Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz, but is still worth the money.


Rating:

Monday, April 4, 2011

Review: Furies of Calderon (Codex Alera #1) by Jim Butcher

Author: Jim Butcher
Format: Audiobook
Narrator: Kate Reading
Series: Codex Alera
Number in Series: One
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Release Date: October 5, 2004
(audiobook release: November 20, 2008)
Genre: Fantasy












In the realm of Alera, where people bond with the furies-elementals of earth, air, fire, water, and metal-fifteen-year-old Tavi struggles with his lack of furycrafting. But when his homeland erupts in chaos-when rebels war with loyalists and furies clash with furies-Tavi's simple courage will turn the tides of war. 


      I finished this book yesterday and I am pleased to say, I am in love. I am sorry to say though, I have not started a Jim Butcher book yet as much I would have loved to. So I am happy that I started this series because it was amazing!

      Furies of Calderon is about an empire named Alera. In Alera, people are known as crafters, it when they have the ability to control the elements. Everyone is born with the ability to control just one except 15-year-old Tavi. He is smaller than other boys, not too coordinated and trouble has a funny way of following him. But that is not where this book starts. 

      This books starts with a young woman named Amara who is traveling with her teacher and father figure, Fidelias. They are known as Cursors, messengers and fighters for the First Lord, Gaius Sextus. After Amara comes up with an idea to to enter a camp of mercenaries who want to assassinate the First Lord, Amara quickly finds that she didn't have a chance. She finds out that *minor spoiler* Fidelias is a traitor and has been plotting against Gaius the entire time. Amara finds out that he has been working with High Lord Aquataine (who wants Gaius' place), Aldrick (the great swordsman), and a powerful and insane watercrafter named Odiana who tricked Amara in the first place.

     So one day Tavi loses one of his sheep and his uncle, Bernard, goes to help him. Well searching for the sheep, they are attacked by a warrior from a vicious (and cannibalistic) tribe known as the Marat. When fighting, Bernard gets wounded and that a furystorm hits. Tavi runs for his life and hides out in a Princeps Memorial. It is there he finds Amara after she had escaped from the camp. Then after Bernard is rescued and saved by his sister, Isana, Bernard goes out and finds Tavi and Amara. They soon find out that they were tracked and have to make a run for it. Amara and Bernard take a liking to each other and Tavi and one of the slaves from his home, Fade, end up with the enemy, the Marat. 

     And that is just the first half of the book. This was simply too good a book. I accidentally requested the audiobook of this book from my library. I was originally looking for the first book in the Dresden Files series, Storm Front, so don't ask me how I ended up with this. I think I was just paying attention to Jim Butcher's name instead of the title. Either way, I am happy I requested it because I am in love. Easily one of the most amazing high fantasy books I have read (or listened to). 

     The story was amazing and well told by Kate Reading. She really captured the voices of the characters well even Tavi, who was insecure and yet brave due to his lack of abilities and she managed to capture his voice the very way I thought he would talk. It was so amazing. I loved all the characters especially Amara. She was one tough girl. She took on the big things, things that a man would usually attempt first. She didn't shy away from anything that went her way and that made me love her more. 

    Furies of Calderon is full of so many little tidbits, I wish I can tell you them all. There are a lot of twists and turns in this book that you would have never seen coming. I love books that do that, I know I have said that before, but I must say it again. I just love it when your perception changes, you think you know, but you had no idea. Same thing happens in the book which was pretty interesting.

    I highly recommend this book. It can get pretty dark and gruesome at some moments. The scene with Odiana and Isana when they were captured had me reeling. It was pretty sad and intense.I really enjoyed the ending to this book, really left a big smile on my face. I really hope everyone reads this and if you have, I would love to hear your thoughts. 




Rating:

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Vampire Releationship Guide Coupon Winnner!

And the winner is....

C. G. Powell

You are the winner hon. You won a coupon from Evelyn Lafont. I sent you an email with the code and rules. Thanks to everyone who commented and congrats again to C. G. Powell and congrats to Evelyn Lafont on her first book!

Book Review: This Side of the Grave (Night Huntress #5) by Jeaniene Frost

Author: Jeaniene Frost
Series: Night Huntress
Number in Series: 5
Format: Paperback
Pages: 357
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: February 22, 2011
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance














Danger waits on both sides of the grave.

  Half-vampire Cat Crawfield and her vampire husband Bones have fought for their lives, as well as for their relationship. But just when they've triumphed over the latest battle, Cat's new and unexpected abilities threaten to upset a long-standing balance . . .
With the mysterious disappearance of vampires, rumors abound that a species war is brewing. A zealot is inciting tensions between the vampires and ghouls, and if these two powerful groups clash, innocent mortals could become collateral damage. Now Cat and Bones are forced to seek help from a dangerous "ally"—the ghoul queen of New Orleans herself. But the price of her assistance may prove more treacherous than even the threat of a supernatural war . . . to say nothing of the repercussions Cat never imagined.





     *Possible spoilers* Just finished this last night and once again, Jeaniene Frost delivered. I have read plenty of reviews for this and I couldn't wait to make mine. This Side of the Grave is fast, action packed, funny and full of more of the world's greatest vampire couple, Cat and Bones.

     This Side of the Grave starts off with Cat and Bones being contacted by two vampires, Ed and Scratch, who desperately need their help. They are told by Ed and Scratch that they are being taken down one by one. Vampires low on the food chain are being annihilated by ghouls. Ghouls think that vampires have had the spotlight for too long and want things to tip in their favor. So with the help and hatred of Apollyon, he is gathering ghouls to hunt and destroy vampires everywhere and top of that list, Cat, due to her "powers". Little do they know she gets her powers by drinking from other vampires, she can't drink from humans.

    So on top of a potential war/genocide and death threats, Cat is blasted with even more horrible news that her uncle, Don, is dying from cancer and no one told her about it. So things really aren't looking up for Cat, but luckily she has Bones who really helps takes her mind off of things. So while on a visit to the voodoo queen, Marie, Cat is forced to drink Marie's blood and she ends up with the power a very special and interesting power. But we don't know exactly at what cost and since Marie is a ghoul, we don't know what Marie's agenda really is.


    I really enjoyed this book. I have heard people saying that something wasn't necessarily working for them and I understand that. I think that since there were plenty of people complaining about Destined For An Early Grave and how Cat and Bones didn't seem like Cat and Bones. I don't really agree with that, but I get it. This Side Of The Grave was both a new story and a rekindling, if you will. I think after all that happened between Cat and Bones from the last book, we were shown more of Cat and Bones and what they are willing to do for each other. I loved that we see Cat break down the last wall she held up against Bones, I didn't cry, but the scene was beautiful.


    I love that we got some Tate in this book and he may still be questionable when it comes Cat and Bones, but it seemed he is finally accepting it. What I didn't like so much was Ian and his one line. I love Ian, why didn't we get more Ian. But I love Frost and can forgive her since we got more Vlad Tepesh. His lines were some of my favorites in this book, for instance,
“Premature inflammation,” he replied. “Happens sometimes. Very embarrassing. I don’t like to talk about it." 
  "I know I'm delicious. Nummy.....nummy."


     And, of course, everyone's favorite Bones' quote:
"Ask me if I sparkle and I’ll kill you where you stand."

     Overall, this was a great book. I won't lie, I did nearly cry at one point (if you read it then you probably know the scene). My biggest complaint was the ending, not the entire ending, just part. The bad guy, Apollyon, was such a coward. I just wanted to kill him because of what he started. Seriously, I can't stand bad guys who talk, but can't do much else. Pathetic. I did like the rest though and the surprise at the end, I didn't expect that to happen. Nonetheless, I recommend this to fans and I read the excerpt at the end for One Grave At A Time (coming out August 30, woohoo!) and I am so excited. Can't wait!


Rating:



   
*This book is for the following challenges*
BCC's Horror & Urban Fantasy Reading Challenge 2011 
Parajunkee's View Vampire Challenge 2011