Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Review: Gena Showalter - The Darkest Secret

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book 9:
The Darkest Secret: Amun/Secrets and Haidee






Summary:
Amun is the keep of Secrets; he immediately knows every one of your deepest darkest secrets and what you are thinking. On a brutal trip to hell Amun absorbed hundreds of the demons into himself and now they are literally swarming around in his head and body driving him mad, until… Haidee has been reborn hundreds of times and each time she remembers none of the good and all of the bad from her previous lives. There are two things that keep her going. 1. Her hatred of the Lords of the Underworld and killing as many of them as she can and 2. The dark skinned man from her dreams that she has finally found in one of her fellow Hunters Micah (or so she thought).  The Lord Strider has captured her, drugged her and thrown her in a room, when she awakes, she starts hearing a voice in her head. Thinking a fellow hunter is next door she breaks through the connecting door to see Micah (or so she thinks) beaten and chained to a bed. When she gets close to him his trashing seems to calm and she feel a pull to him that she has never felt in the past. When Amun wakes up he is finally thinking clearly for the first time in what has to be days, but what he doesn’t understand is why there is a beautiful woman curled up next to him.  Soon Amun comes to realize that Haidee is a Hunter and not only that but the Hunter that was responsible for his best friend Baden’s death, but somehow he can’t seem to kill her. Will Haidee try to kill Amun as soon as she realizes he’s not her boyfriend Micah but in fact a Lord of the Underworld. If they survive each other, the odds of surviving their trip to hell (literally) are not good.

Review:
So I have to admit when I found out that Amun’s love interest was going to be Baden’s killer I wasn’t all that thrilled. I was of the Lords frame of mind of how could Amun fall for the woman that was responsible for his best friend’s death. It just didn’t sit that well with me, but, Gena works her usual magic and by the end you were sympathizing with Haidee.  Haidee actually has a pretty strict moral code and a backbone of steel. After so many life’s and deaths, she comes back a little bit harder and more determined to stay alive. Her rebirths are extremely painful and she comes back filled with hate and only the bad and painful memories.  Amun seems to be the only person that thaws the ice within her. Amun has the heavy burden of carrying around everyone’s secrets, he can’t even speak without spewing every secret that he has learned but he finds that he can speak directly into her mind.  In the past books Amun never speaks so to find someone that he can so freely communicate, you are really happy for him.  Going into this book, you don’t know much about Amun so you don’t really have any preconceived notions, but I was still surprised that he is such a gentle soul and kind of like a big teddy bear. I was not expecting that, but like it all the same! GS will throw you some other twists that might make your jaw drop a little, but I’m not going to tell what they are. This book is also filled with Gena’s typical humor! Some of the text messages between brothers are hilarious! And who know Strider was so funny! Gena starts setting up the next book featuring Strider as well in this book or watch out for that!  This was a good solid read, it isn’t one of my favorites of the series, Aeron gets those honors but I really enjoyed it!

Rating:
4 moons out of 5


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Christine Feehan - Water Bound

Sisters of the Heart Sea Haven Series:

Book 1:
Water Bound: Lev Prakenskii and Rikki

 
*Note this is the UK cover
Summary:
This book picks up right where the last Drake Sisters novel left off, on the day of the mass Drake sister wedding. Rikki is a sea urchin diver with an affinity to water. On the day of the wedding she is out at sea farming for sea urchins when the huge wave that the Drakes sisters combated back knocks Rikki off her boat and back into the ocean. Thankfully, she still had all her gear on. While in the ocean a large man is being knocked around in the aftermath of the waves, Rikki grabs onto him and pulls him back onto the boat. When Lev comes to on a boat, he realizes that he is not sure who he is entirely but he does know that there is life threatening danger surrounding him. When he realizes there is someone on the boat with him instinct takes over and he goes for the throat, literally. When he comes out of his haze he realizes it is the woman with the eyes that pulled him out of the water. Rikki has no idea what to do with this man, she pulled him out of the water so she feels responsible for him, his life is depending on her and something about that resonates with Rikki and she knows without her he will probably die.  He is severely injured and is convinced there is someone out there trying to kill only he doesn’t know who or why. Rikki takes Lev back home with her under much duress, after 4 fires and the death of 3 loved ones she is not entirely sure she isn’t setting those fires herself, so she has become paranoid about anyone being in her home. Lev quickly learned that Rikki is a very unique person and does not like anyone messing up her routine, but something about her stirs his protective instincts, which he never knew he had. He doesn’t know much but he knows that he is a killer, but not in what capacity. As time passes Lev becomes stronger in body, remembers more of his previous life and knows it’s not good. He also knows he wants to start a new life with Rikki and starts to build a new identity. Rikki is autistic with sensory problems; simple things like fluorescent lights cause her severe pain.  After several fires and 3 deaths, Rikki found her “sisters” and same to Sea Haven where she has managed to carve out a peaceful existence for herself. Letting Lev into her life has been extremely difficult for Rikki, but his presence also brings her some sort of calm she never had before. She comes to accept his existence in her world. Lev recognizes Rikki as a water element and under his encouragement she starts to explore her talents more. She finds that she can do a lot more than she always thought she could, she can actually command the water in all its forms. Lev is not without his own talents; he can plant memories, see through animals eyes, and heal to some extent. But with all their talents combined can they combat the two forces that threaten the peace that Lev and Rikki have managed?

Review:
I have read some reviews where people didn’t like how eccentric Rikki is, I disagree with that opinion. I really enjoyed her eccentricities (well I don’t have to live with them, so it’s easy for me. LOL). People come in all forms even autistic ones. Not all heroines are going to be perfect with no bad habits.  What I like about Rikki is despite her disabilities she has she has found a way to live her life the best she can. I can’t even imagine not being able to go into the grocery store because the lights cause her pain. Yet Rikki has managed to become a productive member of the community as well as on the farm with her “sisters”. Lev is a government agent for Russia and is tired of living in the shadows, once he starts remembering things he realizes this is his chance to get out, for Lev to die and Levi to live. He knows that he wants to start his life over with Rikki, when she looks into his eyes he feels like she is looking into his soul. He knows he’s met someone that he can really start over with, someone that accepts everything about him including his past. It was so sweet to see this hardened killer, really accept someone that would realistically be very difficult to be with. He is willing to do what it takes to keep Rikki stable and able to manage within her personal limitations. You get the feeling that these two are the only two that could possibly make it work with each other for the long haul. I do want to note this novel is more of an emotional story there is very little “action” and what little “action” there is, is at the end. What I did not like about this novel was Ilya did not make any appearances, which was one of the reasons I picked this book up. He was my favorite male from the Drake sisters. I waited the whole book for some sort of reunion and there wasn’t one. That was a bummer! And the cover if this book is terrible, I almost skipped listing the picture on this blog I think its so bad! But luckly I found the UK cover (much better)! So please don’t judge this book by its cover. Lol!

Rating:
3.5 moons out of 5


Authors love their fans!

I love authors that love their fans and remain active within their reader community.  Larissa Ione is a great example of this. I recently asked her a question on facebook and within minutes she had responded. She is very accessible to her readers. I have had similar experiences with Gena Showalter who frequently pops into her sites forum to answer questions and participate in the threads. As well as Lydia Dare who has even commented on this blog as well as being active on goodreads and facebook.  You ask her a question and you get a quick response.  I love authors for these very reasons. They love their fans and remain accessible. 

Have you had a great author experience?  Comment with your story!

Monday, March 28, 2011

You're WINNING!!!!

Mandy P and RiN are the winners of the 35 followers contest!



Thank you all for the follows I really appreciate it. I'll do another give away in the near future. Have to keep things lively!

And a special THANK YOU to Parajunkee for the Twitter LOVE!

I have contacted the winners so, no need to contact me.

Mandy P - Look in your Comments!
RiN- Look to your email!

Please let me know what book you want ASAP! I'll try to get it out tomorrow.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

35 Followers Give Away!

Hey readers! If I can reach 35 followers/subscribers by March 28th I will give away one copy to two my followers/subscribers of either:

Gena Showalter: “The Darkest Secret”


Larissa Ione: “Eternal Rider”
or
Kerrelyn Sparks: “Vampire Mine”
 
All these titles release on March 29th, winners to be picked on March 29th. The winner picks which of these three titles they want.

Thanks!


*Note: I will only ship within the United States. Sorry for my international readers. :(

Movie Review – Sucker Punch

Sucker Punch

Run Time: 109 mins
Rated: PG-13
Studio: Warner Bros.  

What it is about:
Basically a young woman’s wealthy mother is killed by her stepfather in order to gain the funds. Upon finding out that everything was left to her daughters the Step Father than kills the youngest daughter and has the oldest daughter “Baby Doll” committed to an insane asylum.

Once in the asylum things get more convoluted. You are taken from a dreary run down hospital setting to a brighter group home feel, where the girls are basically slave labor and “dancers” for the rich. Baby Doll must get out of the asylum before the “High Roller” comes for her.

When Baby Doll dances she enters a trance where her and the other girls fight to obtain 4 items for their freedom. The 5th item only Baby Doll can obtain.

What I thought:
Disclaimer: First of all leave the children at home please! I saw several parents who brought their young children to the movie and they were crying and were scared. This is not appropriate for young children as indicated by the PG-13, I would even go as far as to say it should probably be more of an R but I may be biased in that opinion.

Effects: This is the reason to see this movie! They are fantastic. There are plenty of explosions and action sequences to keep everyone happy!  I did not see this movie in 3-D but I bet it would be even better in 3-D and I’m not usually a 3-D fan. When the girls are in their alternate reality it is non-stop action and effects, you are taken into different scenarios for each item that needs to be retrieved and each scenario is better than the last. And as a bonus the soundtrack was pretty bad a$$, at least it was to my musical tastes. I am thinking of purchasing it. J

Plot Line: It was better than I thought it would be, I don’t go to see this movie for the plat I went more for the effects. However, I was pleasantly surprised; I thought it would be a lot worse. Like along the lines of Red Riding Hood or any of the Twilight movies. The movie kept going fast enough that you never really had a chance to get bored during “down time” meaning between action sequences.

Acting: Some of the acting was better than others. Jenna Malone, Abbie Cornish, Carla Gugino, Scott Glenn and a surprisingly good performance from Oscar Isaac who I don’t think I’ve seen him in anything before. They put in good performances that carried the rest of the cast through the movie. Baby Doll was played by Emily Browning who certainly looked the part but didn’t really have the acting chops quite yet to pull off a lead.  She wasn’t necessarily bad but was flat. There is one scene between Abbie Cornish and Jenna Malone (they are sisters in the movie) that really sticks out and I admit I was close to crying. Vanessa Hudgens is thankfully there more for filler because she is not best of actresses.

Jacquelyn Frank - Seduce Me in Dreams

A Three Worlds Series:

Seduce Me in Dreams: Bronse Chapel and Ravenna



Summary:
Bronse is the commander of a specialized unit of the Interplanetary Militia; they take the jobs that no one else can do. They are sent into impossible situations, but lately it seems like the odds are even more against Bronse than usual. Missions that shouldn’t being going wrong, are… Recently his feeling of foreboding is getting stronger and stronger, and he even has started dreaming of a woman warning him that he cannot be separated from his crew; if they get separated all will perish. After the last mission gone wrong one of his crew found evidence that one of the admirals has been sending Bronse and his crew on suicide missions trying to get Bronse out of the way. After this news Bronse has one of his most intense dreams, the woman that has been warning him came to him again only this time they were able to talk and touch, she once again warned him and said soon they would meet.  Ravenna is the High Priestess of the Chosen Ones; she is able to look into the past, present and future of a person.  She has been captured to be “gifted” to a powerful Shiasha to be added to a large harem and to be used for her gifts. Ravenna knows she is in a bad position that she can get herself out of if she was willing to use her other gifts but she knows Bronse is getting closer and she knows she has to stay so he can rescue her. On another mission gone wrong Bronse and he crew abort the mission only for him to be sucked into the sand and finds himself in an underground tunnel, which leads him straight to Ravenna. The recognition is powerful and swift, all he knows is he has to get her and her brother out of this situation. Ravenna has been beaten terribly and caught a fever that is now racking her body. She needs Bronse to get her to her sister the healer and then get them all off planet. Bronse doesn’t know what to do, he knows his judgment is clouded but he can’t help himself. He allows Ravenna to talk him into saving her and her family of Chosen Ones, now he doesn’t know what to do with them or himself and there is always the threat of the admiral over his head…

Review:
As is usual with first books in a new series a lot of time is setting up the new world and characters. Sometimes I think the first books somewhat get the shaft since the author can’t always just dive right in.  Overall, I think J. Franks did an excellent job setting everything up, but at the same time keeping the excitement level high, we still see plenty of action. Bronse is your typical alpha, military man, and it never gets old: Strong, intelligent, dominating, leader, and honorable.  He is a man you can count on to keep you save and make you feel like the most protected woman, but if you let him he would completely dominate you. Ravenna is a warrior woman at heart! She is very powerful in her own right, she has a quiet strength about her, as the leader of the Chosen Ones which are other gifted individuals she has a lot on her hands but she knows how to be a leader. She has a backbone of steel. Bronse and Ravenna are both strong and passionate, and are a great match. He accepts her for all her power and lets her lead as she sees fit, and she does the same for him. They truly become partners. Overall, I highly enjoyed the book; however, there were two things that got to me. Each of Bronses crew essentially has three names: First, military nickname, and last. J. Franks will switch up which ones she will use referring to each character. Sometime by their first name, most of the time their military nickname and occasionally their last, usually I am good with details but I am terrible with names. If you are anything like me you will get confused as to which names belong to which person. I wish she has introduced the characters and than just stuck with a preferred name. And then there is the ending, don’t get me wrong it is a happy ending, but there was just this one thing that when I read it I was like: “NOOO! I want to know!”, I know why the decision (not giving it away) was made, but I’m basically selfish and I wanted to know!  It was kind of a letdown.

Rating:
4 moons out of 5

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Movie Review - I am Four

I am Four

Rating: PG-13
Run Time: 109 mins

What it is about:
John and various other aliases (Alex Pettyfer) is an alien hiding from other alien forces that invaded his home planet and wiped out his entire race with the exception of him, the 8 other kids like him and their guardians. The alien invaders are hunting down each of the kids in order.  The first 3 have already been killed and are close on John’s heels. John’s protector Henri (Timothy Olyphant) moves himself and John to a small Ohio town where they can hopefully blend in with the locals. There John meets Sarah (Dianna Agron) an intriguing young woman whom he just can’t stay away from even though it draws attention to the local high school bully Mark (Jake Abel). John also starts to come into his powers and these changes also start drawing attention. John also befriends Sam (Callan McAuliffe) whose father disappeared years ago while hunting down rumors of aliens. Sam’s father is the reason Henri brought John to the small town, he was helping Henri find the other Numbers. As the aliens get closer and closer to John so does Number 6 (Teresa Palmer), who arrives just in time.

What I Thought:

Effects/Action:
The action scenes and effects on this movie are excellent! The movie starts immediately with an action scene that I had wished would have lasted a little longer, but it transitions quickly. The first half of the movie is fairly action free but once John starts coming into his powers it takes off running! The last action scene of the movie is a dozy!

Plot:
Invading aliens is not a new concept but they manage to get is pretty fresh. The first half of the movie is kind of slow and setting everything up, it looks as though they are preparing to make this a series. So I am Five should take off running. Think the X-men series.  I like the dynamic between John and Henri, it is not quite father and son, but it is close. Henri orders John around and John doesn’t obey, that’s about as close as you can get to a family as you can get without actually being family. J High School is John way to be “normal” in his otherwise chaotic abnormal life. The Ohio high school is the stereo typical movie high school. There are the jocks (Mark) and the geeks (Sam) and the jocks terrorize the geeks of course. Now I am originally from Indiana in not quite a small town but we would not be considered a large city either. And high school wasn’t really like this, but I guess it could be like that somewhere… John is drawn to Sarah, it’s easy to understand why, she is beautiful, fresh faced, wholesome, Midwestern girl. Although I never understood why action movies always throw in a love story, Hollywood, its ok to forgo the love story every now and then, I promise! Now the best part of this movie in my opinion is Number 6. She is a total bad a$$! Damn I want to be her! LOL!

Acting:
The acting was ok, nothing spectacular but no real complaints either. It looks like a young fresh, fresh, cast, who I look forward to seeing in future endeavors except Pettyfer in Beastly (See Beastly review).

Movie Review - Beastly

Beastly

 
Rating: PG-13
Run Time: 83 mins

What it is about:
Kyle (Alex Pettyfer) is a rich, handsome, popular, but very rude, arrogant and mean person. He makes the mistake of pissing off Kendra (Mary-Kate Olsen), a powerful witch, during elections. To teach him a lesson she turns him into an ugly “beast” and tells him that he has one year to make someone fall in love with him or he stays the beast. Kyle’s dad, embarrassed, by his ugly son, pulls him from school and isolates him across town in his own house with a tutor – Will (Neil Patrick Harris) and a housekeeper – Zola (Lisa Gay Hamilton). Coincidently, this new house is in the general area of do gooder Lindy (Vanessa Hudgens), who is beautiful, open minded and even better had a crush on Kyle in High School.

Lindy’s father is in danger, so there for so is she. Kyle offers Lindy’s father a safe haven for her to stay, until it is safe for her again. Assuming the identity of Hunter, Kyle very slowly tries to woo the fair Lindy. But with his beastly looks he fears he will never be able to win her.

What I thought:
This movie is ghastly! I don’t know why I even went to go see it; I knew it was going to be bad. If you want to see a good beauty and the beast story rent “Beauty and the Beast” the Disney cartoon version. It is a classic! Lindy played by Vanessa Hudgens, could be a good character if Hudgens could act, but she is not well known for her acting chops. Lindy had the potential to be a cute endearing character but came off mostly flat. Kyle played by Alex Pettyfer is not very believable. Pettyfer tries to convey emotion but it doesn’t connect, he is basically dumped by his dad, turned into a beast, needs/wants to love but none of it conveys very well. You do get moments of believable anger, so I guess all is not lost.  I saw Pettyfer in I am Four and I expected more from him than this. Surprisingly enough Will the tutor played by Neil Patrick Harris is the best part of this film. All moments of comedy spring from Wills inappropriate sarcastic humor. I do have to admit Harris was the scene stealer in this movie, not that it would have been hard to steal any of the scenes. Kendra played by Mary-Kate Olsen had very little screen time but she wore some fantastic cloths and even better shoes. But what was going on with her hair and make-up? They put her in designer clothes and shoes and then completely compromised that with disastrous hair and makeup. I understand that she is gothic and a witch, but I am sure I speak for all the Wiccan’s/witches out there that just because they are a witch does not mean they walk around with bad hair and makeup especially when wearing beautiful clothes. I’m just saying. Skip this movie until it comes out on Red Box unless you happen to have a hugely arrogant, mean spirited child that needs a lesson.

Rating:
(Red Box it)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Kresley Cole - Dreams of a Dark Warrior

Immortals after Dark Series:

Book 11:

Dreams of a Dark Warrior: Declan Chase a.k.a. Aidan the Fierce and Regin the Radiant


Summary:
Declan watched his entire family massacred by immortals and then was taken captive to have his flesh dined upon and his blood consumed.  Declan hates immortals with a fierce loathing and has manifested itself into an obsession.  He has made it his life’s work to exterminate all immortals.  When the “Order” (a mortal organization that captures, experiments on and kills immortals) rescues Declan he immediately joins the group and for the next 20 years is merciless in his destruction of immortals... until... Regin has always been the fun loving prankster of the Valkyrie, as well as one of the most feared immortals of the Lore.  At the young age of 12 Regin meets Aiden the Fierce when she needs help finding her half sister Lucia whom she fears is in mortal danger. Aiden is the fiercest Berserker in the history of the Berserkers, Aiden recognizes the proud young Regin as “his” from the moment they met. Knowing her tender years he tells Regin that he will wait until she is grown before claiming her as his, which is the wrong thing to say to Regin. Regin is not about to belong to anyone so she leaves Aiden to set out on her own. Years later Regin is about to go through her change into immortality and seeks out Aiden, as he said she would do to help her through some of the “side effects” of the change. When Aiden is killed in Regins arms by a Vampire he vows that he will find a way to return to her; and he does 4 other times throughout history as reincarnations of himself. However, he is cursed each time “Aiden” remembers his former self his is violently killed with Regin as witness within hours.  Declan is a reincarnation of Aiden the Fierce and has no idea of his former self.

Declan/Aiden:
As a kid Declan always knew there was something different about himself. It was like he had a beast within himself trying to get out and nothing seemed to ease the restlessness. He turned to drugs at a young age in attempt to curb the feelings with not much success.  Even his attempts with woman made him feel sick and empty. When he returns home, he finds his entire family dead and himself taken captive. Declan soon realizes that his family were the lucky ones, for days the immortals peeled flesh from his torso and arms eating his skin and drinking his blood, he begged to die, death would have been preferable to the torture he endured.  Immediately following his rescue Declan cleans up and joins the “Order”.  When he captures Regin the Radiant it should have been just another routine capture but his entire being recognizes her as.. what???  While Regin is in captivity over and over he found himself watching her with confusion, recognition and desire, and then she tells him that he is her dead lover reincarnated. If he was to believe that it would rock his entire belief system to the core there is no way he could be one of them, as a Berserker. Yet, it would explain so much....

Regin:
Over and over Aiden has been returned to her only to die within hours of remembering everything about his past lives. For 1000 years Regin has remained faithful to her proud Berserker, only to lose him all too soon. As soon as Regin sees Declan she recognizes him as her Aiden reincarnated but what she can’t believe is how he turned out. None of the past Aiden’s have been able to inflict her with pain, yet this A-Hole has tortured her! Regin’s heart aches for her man but soon realizes that he must die if she is going to get herself and her friends out of this facility alive. Now all she has to do is seduce him and get him to remember. But in seducing him she finds herself seduced, can she bring an end to this proud warrior to save herself, to save her friends....

Review:
As usual Kresley Cole DELIVERS! This book is fantastic! I could not put it down, I was sitting there at work trying to work and read at the same time (let me tell you it didnt go so well) and I wished I could tell my customers to leave me alone so I could read. LOL! Since that didn’t go so well I was up until 4 am finishing the book.  Declan and Regin are portrayed to perfection. I found myself tearing up in places, which is an ultimate compliment to an author. You really feel for Regin and Declan and root for them, hoping they can bridge the whole Aiden torturing Regin “misunderstanding”.  You will see another side to Regin, you see a vulnerable side to her that you have not seen in any of the other books leading up to this one. (Regin has been a regular in previous books in this series.) She has always been so confident and dare I say obnoxious but in a fun, reminds you of your favorite younger sister sort of way. Declan is heartbreaking, the way he hides his internal and external scars, never even allowing himself a friend in his stark existence.


Lothaire Enemy of Old plays a fairly large role in this novel, which is going to set up the next book which K. Cole has already announced will be her next novel. Many new Lore beings are introduced in this book as new alliances are made in the confines of their cells. Also, as with previous novels this one is part of a series but if you haven’t read any of the previous books that is ok, you could pick this one up without having previously read any of the rest of the series. It can stand on its own, but I would suggest at least reading the book prior to this one Demon from the Dark, it will fill in a few gaps here and there. Kresley Cole just gets better and better with each book she puts out. I for one cannot wait until the next one.

Rating:
5 moons out of 5


Gena Showalter - The Darkest Lie

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book 8:
The Darkest Lie: Gideon/Lies and Scarlett/Nightmares

 
Summary:
Gideon is a human lie detector, he is the keeper of the demon Lies and anytime someone lies, his demon shouts with glee. Unlike some of the other warriors Gideon likes his demon, he is stronger, faster and can do things he couldn’t before… only problem is, he can only talk in lies or he experiences horrific pain. After thousands of years his friends and warriors have learned to understand “Gideon Speak” but that doesn’t mean it isn’t annoying to them and to Gideon. Sometimes Gideon just wants to say what he means without passing out from pain.  Scarlett was born in Tartarus the prison of the Gods; she is daughter to Rhea the Queen of the Gods but not to Cronus, Rhea’s husband and King of the Gods. All three of them are all stuck in a jail cell together for thousands of years, talk about AKWARD!  The only thing that Scarlett looks forward to while she is imprisoned is when Gideon makes his appearances.  So she is overjoyed when they become involved and get married… or did they?

Scarlett is driving Gideon crazy!  She will not give him a straight answer on anything. Lies his demon is not picking up on anything so he can’t even tell if she is lying to him or telling him the truth, he can’t believe that he would ever forget having a wife.  So Gideon does the only thing a man can do he abducts her from his own prison and sets out to seduce her for answers, only she ends up seducing him just as much.  When the Hunters immediately find Gideon he is suspicious about how they found him so quickly. Demanding an audience with Cronus, Gideon finds out that the hunters have been getting help from Rhea all this time.  Scarlett hates her mother! She is an evil witch; ever since she was young her own mother has been trying to kill her and now is not any different.  Though out the novel Gideon and Scarlett are being puppets of the Gods and they are a mission to finally find out the truth, but will the truth hurt and would they have been better off without knowing?

Review:
To be honest this is not one of my favorites of the series, to no fault of the plot.  I think it was more of “Gideon Speak” drove me nuts, I couldn’t wait for the translations that followed the passage and I was trying to translate on my own as I was reading.  So as a recommendation wait for the translations and don’t drive yourself crazy translating for yourself.  On the other hand Scarlett does have one of the coolest demons as Nightmares. When she gets into some of the dreams and wreaks havoc its pretty cool!

Rating:
3 moons out of 5


Gena Showalter - The Darkest Passion

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book 7:
The Darkest Passion: Aeron/Wrath and Olivia (Fallen Angel)

Summary:
Aeron knows every sin you have EVER committed, he can tell with one glance if you have ever robbed, cheated, killed, lied, etc… He despises anything that he feels is weak especially humans, they just die so easily and often.  Aeron is dangerously close to the edge of losing control of his demon side the only thing that seems to calm him these days is his demon companion Legion.  Lately he hasn’t even had that, lately someone or something has been watching him, a presence that greatly disturbs Legion and now Aeron resents the presence for keeping his “daughter” away from him. That presence is Olivia an Angel that has become fascinated with Aeron because of his contrasts.  His demon is Wrath and he has killed many people but his obvious love and loyalty towards his friends and even the demon Legion moves Olivia so much that she when she is made a Warrior Angel and tasked with killing Aeron she refuses and becomes a fallen Angel.

When Aeron sees a woman running across their land screaming his name his first instinct is to kill or leave her to rot on the land, when he sees how bloody her robe is he changes his mind and swoops her up, literally, he does have wings after all.  After he realizes that this beautiful woman is the presence that he has been feeling he is almost ready to throw her back out the window, a fallen angel even a gorgeous one is not what he needs right now.  When Olivia falls from heaven she has no clear plan about what she is going to do now except get to her Aeron and have FUN! As an angel she did not get to have fun and after watching fun all these centuries she decided she wants to have some too and to have as much of that fun as she can with Aeron. When Olivia falls sick due to all her injuries Lysander (Olivia’s mentor and best friend) comes to heal her and gives her 14 days of freedom where she can live as a human with angel abilities and in that time she has to decide to either remain on earth as a full human or come back to heaven as an angel and complete her mission to kill Aeron.  Aeron has no idea to do with Olivia, she refuses to leave the fortress and she is bent on seducing him and worse he is finding it harder and harder to resist her.  Even Wrath is betraying him by screaming “MINE!” and “MORE” in his head ALL the time. When the Lords find out that Olivia is a wealth of information for furthering their cause in the war they decide that despite Aeron’s wishes they need to keep her close.  Now add in Legion, Legion loves Aeron not as he loves her (fatherly love) but as a woman who loves a man and she will not let that angel have her man! So Legion makes a deal with the devil…

Review:
This is my favorite novel in the series so far! I adore Aeron and Olivia, talk about opposites attracting, Olivia is calm to Aeron’s storm and joy to his darkness. Watching Olivia experience things for the first time in her sheltered life reminds you how sometime we take the simplest things like enjoying a meal for granted. The way Olivia breaks Aeron down little by little is humorous, oh how the mighty fall.  The love triangle between, Aeron, Legion and Olivia is entertaining! There is plenty of passion, entertainment and laughs in this novel.


Rating:
5 moons out of 5


Gena Showalter - The Darkest Angel

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book 6:
The Darkest Angel: Lysander (Warrior Class Angel) and Bianka (Harpy)
*Anthology

Summary:
When Lysander one of the Elite Seven Angels sees Bianka for the first time he realizes he has found his one true “Temptation” that could bring him to ruin. Not knowing what to do about his temptation because he can’t kill her because she hasn’t broken an unpardonable rule he swoops down from the heaven and captures her and takes her back to his cloud palace.  Bianka has no idea who this gorgeous man is, but so far she’s not minding her abduction at least until she finds out he’s an angel bent on “redeeming” her.  As if she needs redeeming, how can you improve upon perfection anyway?! Lysander informs Bianka that he is not letting her go and he will be changing her to his way of life, Bianka is having none of that and decides it would be wicked fun to shake up and seduce the ridiculously controlled Lysander since she has nothing better to do in her captivity and it would be fun to leave him once she has corrupted him.  The best laid plans….. never seem to work out how you had planned.

Review:
This novella is hilarious! I laughed through the whole thing, Bianka was cracking me up! It is a very quick read maybe only 100 pages or so and well worth the time. It may be easy to miss this novella since it is in an anthology but DON’T miss it.

Rating:
5 moons out of 5

Gena Showalter - The Darkest Whisper

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book 5:
The Darkest Whisper: Sabin/Doubt and Gwendolyn the Timid (Harpy)

Summary:
Sabin can make you doubt the color of your own hair, for he is the keeper of the demon Doubt.  Sabin has a hit out on his head by the second in command of the Hunters. Years ago Sabin had an affair with the man’s wife, she ended up killing herself for which he firmly places all blame at Sabin’s feet and he’s been after him ever since with a vengeance.  All Gwen ever does is doubt herself, she is half Harpy and half Angel and she grew up always thinking that the two sides of her were in conflict.  She tries so hard to repress her Harpy side that when it does come out anyone around her is collateral damage and she wakes up having no idea what just happened.  

The Hunters took Gwen captive over a year ago and have kept her in a cage making her watch as they torture the other creatures that were also captives. They don’t dare let her out of her cage because they are deathly afraid of her as they should be!  Sabin has heard of a possible location for the third artifact in the deserts of Egypt, when they enter a crypt full of Hunters the last thing they expect to see is a room full of caged pregnant women.  They let all the women out and transport them all home but Sabin decides to keep Gwen, he saw what she is capable of and decided she would make an excellent addition to the team. It didn’t hurt that he found her exciting, deadly and beautiful.  For lack of any way else out the god forsaken desert Gwen agrees to go along with Sabin’s plan, it didn’t hurt that she is also wildly attracted to him.  While with the Lords Sabin decides that Gwen really needs to train to learn to fight and control her Harpy, the only problem with that is it can take a 100 years for a Harpy to learn to control themselves and they have about a 100 minutes to learn control not a 100 years! 

Review:
You watch as Sabine flips his views from being the war as his number one priority to Gwen’s safety being his priority even if it means putting the Lords at a disadvantage in the war.  He has always been an equal opportunist; he never treated the women on his team different then the men, now he has a woman twisting him up in knots with his need to protect. It is also very endearing to watch him in his reassurances to Gwen; he never wants his demon Doubt to make her doubt herself or him, it shows how much he cares.  Gwen is one of my favorite women characters; she goes from Timid to Fierce! You watch in Gwen’s journey from wanting to be left alone and to retreat from her inner Harpy to a warrior woman who embraces her full nature! After all her training she is ready to take on any Hunters who dare to harm her man!

Rating:
4 moons out of 5

Gena Showalter - The Darkest Pleasure

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book 4:
The Darkest Pleasure – Reyes/Pain and Danika Ford

 
Summary:
Reyes thinks jumping off the roof and breaking every bone in his body feels pleasurable; he is the keeper of Pain. He only feels pleasure when he is inflicting pain on himself or on others. The few times he has tried being in a “relationship” the woman always ended up turning into something evil because of his demon, they too started to crave inflicting pain on others so he gave up centuries ago. When the other Lords kidnap Danika and her family he immediately feels a pull to Danika even though she hates him and his fellow Lord Aeron/Wrath has been tasked with killing her as well as her family by Cronus.  Aeron cannot hold out completing his task much longer he is growing more feral each day that passes.  Danika is terrified, she was kidnapped and now is being hunted so naturally she has gone into hiding and refuses to ever be a victim ever again, and she will protect herself.  Even though his friends kidnapped her, Danika cannot forget Reyes even while she is hating him she is desiring him and she doesn’t understand why keeps showing up to rescue her, isn’t he supposed to be killing her?

The Lords are continuing to look for the second artifact the All Seeing Eye; and it seems to circle back to Danika, for Reyes it always seems to come back to her. When she is captured by Hunters the Lords decide to rescue her even though the Hunters may have turned her to their side, after all she isn’t too happy with the Lords as a collective whole.  Danika doesn’t know what to do, she agreed to do a little spying for the Hunters but now that she is back in Reyes arms she doesn’t know if she can betray him like that. Her feeling for him grow each day that she is with him. Reyes is ecstatic that he has Danika back and terrified at the same time as desires mount he is afraid he will corrupt Danika like he did the others and he just can’t risk that, not with her.  He also has to worry about the possible Hunter threat, have they made her Bait (not that it matters to him if she were) and there is still the threat of Aeron.  In no way are these two having an easy time of it.

Review:
You have to admire Danika’s grit and fight, even with her life in jeopardy she still has spirit and refuses to be a victim she refuses to go down lightly. Once she gets free the first time she starts taking defense lessons so that if that she is prepared to fight for her very life and take out anyone that threatens her. Reyes dedication to Danika is inspiring, who wouldn’t want a man that cares so deeply for you, someone who puts you above himself.  With the odds stacked so high against Danika will they be able to keep her alive to allow for their romance to fully bloom?  With all the action in this novel you will not be bored that is for sure.

Rating:
5 moons out of 5

Gena Showalter - The Darkest Kiss

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book 3:
The Darkest Kiss - Lucien/Death and Anya, minor goddess of Anarchy



Summary:
Lucien is Death or as some might call him the Grim Reaper, he is charged with keeping the demon Death. He is to escort souls to their resting place whether it Heaven or Hell. Lucien is considered to be the leader of the Budapest Lords; he is usually unshakable in temperament rarely losing his cool and ability to think logically.  He is also horrifically scared with one brown and one blue to enable him to see into the spirit world.  He is sure that no women will ever look at him with desire again. Anya is the Greek goddess of Anarchy, who has a bad rap; so she has set a few towns on fire, caused a few wars, stolen a few artifacts, but that was years ago! She hardly ever sets things on fire anymore and come on what does stealing some stuff really hurt anyway? The minute she sees Lucien she is fascinated! Those scars are sooo delicious, as are the eyes and he’s so hard and unflappable; she can’t wait to get her hands on him literally and figuratively.

Cronus tasks Lucien with killing Anya after all he is Death and Anya has shown an unusual amount of interest in him, she has something he wants and he will not rest until he has it.  As Lucien is tracking Anya all over the world, he can’t figure out what her interest is in him she can’t possibly want him, even he knows how ugly he is, he made sure of that. When he finally tracks her down he can’t bring himself to kill her… this time so he offers her some time to “put her affairs in order”. In the mean time the Lords must find 4 of Cronus’s artifacts to locate “Pandora’s Box” before the Hunters do. So now he is a race to find 4 artifacts that no one knows where they are, escort souls and kill a goddess who doesn’t want to die, who has the time for all of that? During her reprieve from Death, Anya finds herself stalking Lucien randomly despite the fact he is trying to kill her, but she misses him damn it! Having a goddess stalking you has its advantages especially when she knows so much about the gods and where they hide things now if only she would stop tempting him, damnit!

Review:
This is one of my favorite books of the series; Lucien and Anya take you on a fun wild ride all around the world! When they aren’t fighting or trying to kill each other their passion is running deep.  Anya as a character is genuinely funny and entertaining who enjoys pushing Lucien out of his comfort zone. It’s a tale of beauty and the beast.  Can Lucien find a way to get Cronus what he wants without having to kill Anya who has come to mean more to him this his own life?

Rating:
5 moons out of 5


Gena Showalter - The Darkest Night

Lords of the Underworld Series:

Book2:
The Darkest Night – Maddox/Violence and Ashlyn Darrow

Summary:
Maddox has died every night at exactly midnight and his soul escorted by Death to the depths of hell only to be resurrected each morning for thousands of years. He is cursed, not only with the demon Violence which is bad enough but Zeus also cursed him to die each night stabbed 6 times in the torso.  Ashlyn hears things she shouldn’t. She hears every conversation that has ever happened in that spot no matter how long ago or language. Tormented by her “gift” she is sent to World Institute of Parapsychology by her parents.  As a child in the institute she leads an isolated existence until they figure out how they can use her. Ashlyn is sent around the world to “listen” for clues for paranormal activities, which is how she ends up in Budapest and the Lords fortress, she is convinced one of them can help her learn to control her abilities.  

Maddox is sent outside the fortress just before midnight, there are people trespassing on their land, Hunters and a women probably Bait (A female Hunters used to lure the Lords to be captured). Maddox kills the male hunters and as midnight gets closer he doesn’t know what to do with a frightened Ashlyn who claims not to be Bait and doesn’t even know what it is, so he just grabs her and takes her with him to the fortress.  Ashlyn is sobbing with relief for the first time the voices are gone, she doesn’t know how the enraged man was able to do it but she doesn’t care and she isn’t leaving him! Hauled over the man’s shoulder he takes her into the fortress and when they get there he is promptly stabbed to death by his “friends”, she is then thrown in the dungeon and to top it off the voices are back!  When Maddox comes to fetch her in the morning e is furious the woman is in the dungeon even though she is probably Bait. The more time Maddox spends with Ashlyn the more he is unwilling to let her go even if she does turn out to be Bait, she calms not only him but his inner demon, when she is around Violence isn’t spewing to get out.  Ashlyn does not want to leave this man, for the first time in her life the voices stop whenever he is around and it doesn’t hurt that he is gorgeous.  While Ashlyn stays at the fortress the war between the Lords and Hunters escalates to a new high, is it merely a coincidence that with Ashlyn’s arrival the Hunters arrive in mass as well?

Review:
You really feel for these two, both Her childhood is heartbreaking in its loneliness, her parents gave her away, the institute basically left her alone until they found a use for her, she can’t have friends, she can’t date, until she meet Maddox who for some reason when he is around she doesn’t hear any voices! When she is sobbing on the hill you really feel for her and realize some of the things you take for granted.  Maddox has rarely left the fortress in hundreds of years he has isolated himself because he fears what his demon will do, he has control but barely. The slightest thing can set him off and then people die, and then there is his curse every night he dies and that doesn’t do much for a social life.  Ashlyn seems to calm his inner demon but he is still frightened of what Violence is capable of and there is always the possibility that she is bait. With the escalating war, Maddox’s curses, the Lords and Ashlyn’s mortality can these two possibly make things work or will one of them end up dead?

Rating:
4 moons out of 5