Tag Archives: Novella

The Wallflower (Halle Pumas # 1)

By Dana Marie Bell

Synopsis

Emma Carter has been in love with Max Cannon since high school, but he barely knew she existed. Now she runs her own unique curio shop, and she’s finally come out her shell and into her own.

When Max returns to his small home town to take up his duties as the Halle Pride’s Alpha, he finds that shy little Emma has grown up. That small spark of something he’d always felt around the teenager has blossomed into something more—his mate!

Taking her “out for a bite” ensures that the luscious Emma will be permanently his.

But Max’s ex has plans of her own. Plans that don’t include Emma being around to interfere. To keep her Alpha, Emma must prove to the Pride that she has what it takes to be Max’s mate.

Review

I first read THE WALLFLOWER back in 2010 and I’ve read it a couple of times since then, but I’ve never reviewed it for our blog.  This is the first book in the Halle Pumas series and introduces us to Max (the alpha) and Emma (his mate).  This is a series I quite enjoy because all the books are light, quick and fun to read.  Oh, and the sex is animalistic and hot!

“I want Livia to grind her teeth into powder when she sees you on my arm. And then I want us both to smile at her and wish her well after she bows down to you.”
“Damn, Max, you should have been a girl. That’s totally bitchy.”

Max has returned to Halle to take over the Puma pride; a right he earned years ago when he was still human.  He’s not looking for his mate, but he finds her anyway when he sees Emma for the first time since he left, and he wastes no time in claiming her.  Emma is the town’s wallflower; the Plain Jane that the popular girls pick on, even though high school has been over for almost a decade.  Everyone underestimates her strength and when she gets a taste of her power, she wields it beautifully.

When he’d used his power to force an answer out of her in that alley, she’d actually walked away from him, back turned, head held high. He still couldn’t decide if he wanted to fuck her or spank her for that.

THE WALLFLOWER is told in dual POVs and is a great way to spend an hour or two.

The Wallflower (Halle Pumas # 1)

My Rating:  

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Halle Pumas Series

Yes, Prime Minister

By Aria Cole

Synopsis

As the Prime Minister of the greatest nation to the north, boyishly handsome Bryce Gallagher gets exactly what he wants, exactly when he wants it. He’s never met a foreign dignitary he couldn’t charm, or an office assistant that didn’t swoon with one panty-dropping smile. But Bryce has never met a woman that’s caught his attention. And then Juliette Alexandre walked into his life.

Growing up on the wrong side of the tracks requires grit, and Juliette Alexandre has it in spades. She’s worked tooth and nail for every accomplishment she’s earned, which is why she is zero percent interested in the perfectly round, incredibly taut, viral-worthy assets of her new boss, Prime Minister Gallagher. She’s finally landed the dream job, now she just has to avoid drooling over the sexy-as-sin Prime Minister every time he shoots her that toe-curling grin. The fate of the country may depend on it.

Review

YES, PRIME MINISTER was downloaded onto my Kindle as soon as I heard about it.  A beefy story about the hot Prime Minister of Canada?  Yes please!  Sadly, I had no idea that this was going to be an insta-love novella, one without much of a story to sink my teeth into.

For me, a novella can be a hit or a miss.  If it’s part of a series with previously established characters, it’s generally a hit.  When it’s a stand-alone, not so much.  Some have too much happening.  Some move too fast.  Some don’t delve into the characters backstory.  YES, PRIME MINISTER doesn’t have a lot thrown in; instead it focused purely on the relationship between Bryce and Juliette.  While the story itself didn’t move too fast, their relationship certainly did, with Bryce declaring Juliette was “the one” before they had even been on a single date.  In regards to the characters, we learn almost nothing about them personally from reading this story.  For example, Juliette grew up on the wrong side of the tracks and has worked very hard for everything she has, but we only know this about her because it’s mentioned in the blurb.  It’s not mentioned anywhere in the story at all.  What’s the point of giving her a difficult past if it’s not going to form a part of the actual story?

YES, PRIME MINISTER had potential, but I felt the insta-love and the overall lack of a story was too much to overcome.  If you like quick reads that take less than an hour, contain no conflict and have some light kink thrown in, this novella is for you.

Yes, Prime Minister

My Rating:  

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Liar (Karma Inc. # 3)

By Gillian Zane

Synopsis

Karma doesn’t get an off day. Working for Karma Incorporated might sound like the best job in the world, but there’s one really big catch: you’ve got to die to get it. Cassandra Mercier died at the ripe old age of twenty-one and is now gainfully employed by the Afterlife Corporation as a Karma operative. She’s still working nine to five, undercover as Cassidy Hail to deliver some much needed cosmic payback. 

Her next target is a big, fat liar. 

Lori Kay Biggly, Lori Kay, not Lori by itself. There was another Laurie, but the other Laurie spelled her name with an ‘AU’. To set herself apart she must be called Lori Kay. Kay as in the middle name, not the letter. Her last name was Biggly. Lori Kay Biggly. Maiden name Craig, but she goes by Biggly only. No hyphenation or ‘feministly’ holding on to old last names for this girl. And Lori Kay Biggly was a liar. She lied. She sabotaged others at her work, she manipulated the boss with sexual favors…and she was getting her just desserts. Courtesy of Karma, Inc. 

While on the case, Cassandra also has the matter of her own death that she must solve, a goddess that has decided to take a more “hands-on” approach to management and a curious private investigator who she finds it hard to maintain her own lies with. It’s just another day working for Afterlife Corporation.

Review

LIAR is the third book in the Karma Inc. novella series and continues on from where the previous book—SHARK—ended.  As with the previous two books, Cassidy spent a small portion of her time working on her current Karma case, but most of the book is focused on her finding out what happened to her in her past life.

I don’t know if this is a continuation error or if I just misunderstood, but I was under the impression that Cassandra had been missing since her disappearance a year ago and that no-one knew what had happened to her.  Yes, foul play was suspected, but no-one knew for sure.  Here it was sprung on us that her body was in fact found the day after she went missing and she had been brutally murdered.  Like I said, maybe I just misunderstood, but as soon as I read that scene my first thought was “Ummm…Wait…What?”.

Moving on, we knew from the previous book that there was something special about Cassidy because she could see through the glamour of a god.  In this instalment we learn that there’s at least one other god who is “involved” with her life/afterlife—but we don’t know who—and that she is changing in ways she shouldn’t be.

She spent a lot of time with Drake in this book and they finally take their “relationship” to the next level.  She confessed to him who she really is and that she hired him to find out what happened to her.  He obviously has some experience with the paranormal because he took her confession extremely well.  We know Drake isn’t exactly human, but we still don’t know what he is.  I don’t even think he knows what he is; he just knows he’s different.

LIAR is told only in Cassidy’s POV and ends in a cliffhanger.  Each book in this series is connected and cannot be read as stand-alones.  I don’t know the name of the next book or when it will be released, but I’ll definitely be reading it when it comes out.

Liar (Karma Inc. # 3)

My Rating:  

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Karma Inc. Series

Shark (Karma Inc. # 2)

By Gillian Zane

Synopsis

Karma does have a list…and Cassidy Hail is currently working on it.

Working for Karma Incorporated might sound like the best job in the world, but there’s one really big catch: you’ve got to die to get it. Cassandra Mercier died at the ripe old age of twenty-one and is now gainfully employed by the Afterlife Corporation as a Karma operative. She’s taken on the persona of Cassidy Hail and she’s going undercover to deliver some much needed cosmic payback. Her next target is a Shark. 

Phillip Liam Nixon. Millionaire. COO of Butterfield Advertising Group. Chronic gambler, chronic womanizer and part-time embezzler. He’s going down and Cassidy’s the one who’s going to help him on his way. That’s if she can manage her own afterlife in the process, which is now brimming with Gods and Goddesses she didn’t know existed, an overly curious investigator who has his sights set on Cassidy, and the budding suspicion that something isn’t quite normal about the way she died. 

Welcome to the Afterlife Corporation, where the currency of choice is souls…

Review

SHARK is the second book in the Karma Inc. novella series and continues on from where the first book⎯CHEAT⎯ended.  Only about a third of the story is spent on Cassidy’s current Karma case, while the rest of it is focused on her personal life (and death).  She still wants to know about how she died, but she no longer wants Drake to investigate her past life; he sees too much and turns her on too much.  But Drake is intrigued, not just with the case but also with Cassidy, so he’s continuing with his investigation.  In this novella we saw the appearance of a couple of people from Cassidy’s past life, as well as Persephone, the goddess in charge of Karma Inc.  I think things are about to get a whole lot more interesting for Cassidy.  SHARK is told only in Cassidy’s POV and ends in a little bit of a cliffhanger that leads us into the next book, LIAR.  Each book is connected and can’t be read as stand-alones.

Shark (Karma Inc. # 2)

My Rating:  

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Karma Inc. Series

Tender Echoes: A Dark Prequel to Digital Velocity

By Reily Garrett

Synopsis

Theft of spirit is no one’s birthright.

A quirk of her X chromosome furnished Alexis with an edge few others enjoyed. After fate plunged Lexi into orphan status and an intolerable foster home forced her to the streets, a group of prostitutes sheltered her from their vicious pimp. Seeing something special within, they nurtured and shielded her from their harsh reality until she could forge her own path in life.
Destiny frequently takes us back to our roots. Lexi’s return journey begins when a serial killer attacks someone who’d offered her refuge in her previous life. Relying on courage and wit, she must stay a step ahead and secure evidence to free her family from a psychopathic murderer.

Review

Family comes in all shapes and forms. In Tender Echoes, family comes in the shape of prostitutes who take care of each other and girl who finds herself on the streets.  Family also comes in the form of the kindness of others who help her get the support that she needs so that she can reach her potential.  But help goes both ways and when the pimp who is boss over her family decides to punish one of them Lexi decides to make sure he doesn’t get away with it.

Lexi is a bright girl that has been given a hard road in life but she is loyal to those who have supported her.   She is brave and even if she fears what might happen to her, she will do everything in her power to make sure justice comes to the pimp.

Ethan is the detective that Lexi is giving information to.  He seems like a good person who wants to have justice come down on the pimp as well.  Lexi has a lot of trust issues that is preventing her from telling Ethan who she is and that she is the one who is giving him all the information.

Tender Echoes is a prequel to this series.  I like the fact the Lexi is smart and uses her skills to help those who need help around her.  Ethan is also an interesting character and I hope we are going to learn more about him in the future. There was no romance in this part of the story but a lot of action that set this series up for some interesting adventures in the future.

Tender Echoes

My Rating:  

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Shutter speed: A Snapshot Novella

By Freya Barker

Synopsis

She likes picking up her camera because it allows her to see things through a different lens. Like when she lost her job recently and instead of focusing on what she’s forced to leave behind, she zooms in on the new options opening up in front of her. Or when a dangerous looking silver fox comes rolling up her path on a FatBoy, and her digital output shows a deep loneliness, matching her own, in his ice-blue eyes.
But when she’s working on making her dreams come true, she inadvertently captures something in her viewfinder she can’t un-see.

He wasn’t supposed to be here, but he can’t seem to escape his old life. Stuck in an old trailer in the mountains, he walks a fine line between ruse and reality. With the arrival of a young-looking pixie—who turns out to be a full grown, hot-blooded woman—his balance is thrown.
He tries to avoid her, but with the little pixel peeper snapping everything in sight, she unintentionally risks his exposure.

And his focus needs to be sharp to keep her from danger.

Review

Shutter speed is a novella that has a lot of suspense to it.  Definitely set the story up between Ben and Isla.

Isla is taking over the campground for her Uncle who is going to take care of her ailing Aunt. She has a passion for photography which just might get her into trouble.

Ben is trying to move onto the next chapter in his life but he keeps getting dragged back.  The first time he sees Isla he knows there is something special about her but in his current line of work the best thing to do is push her away.  But Isla is very good at being in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Ben must work hard at achieving his goals and keeping her safe.

Shutter speed sets this up to be a thrilling series.  I look forward to the next chapter in Ben and Isla’s story.

Shutter speed

My Rating:  

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Dirty Doctor (Steamy Coffee Collection # 2)

By Whitney G.

Synopsis

“Lean back on the table and spread your legs for me …”

Being a doctor in New York City has never been easy. Especially for someone like me, who has a private practice and an incompetent staff who insists on leaving me to fill in for them. 

Over the past six months, I’ve performed one too many pap smears, three too many “breast exams,” and scrubbed in on several reconstructive surgeries. (This would be acceptable, if I was still interested in general medicine, but I’m not. I’m supposed to be a goddamn therapist …)

When my team finally came to their senses and decided to bring someone more competent into the practice last month, I was actually elated. 

Until I realized that our new “doctor” was none other than the woman I was supposed to meet for dinner two weeks ago. The same woman who stood me up with nothing more than an “I can’t meet you anymore, sorry,” after we agreed to move our online talks into reality. 

I haven’t forgotten any of the filthy fantasies she told me about, and I never deleted our dirty messages. And if she thinks that I’m going to act like a “professional” and pretend like that shit never happened, she has another thing coming …

Review

“What are you doing two Fridays from now?”
“Nothing that I know of.”
“Wrong answer.  You’ll be fucking me.”

DIRTY DOCTOR is a stand-alone novella that was a quick and entertaining read.  There’s not really any drama or conflict, unless you include Garrett trying to make Natalie’s work-life hell as punishment for standing him up on the night they were supposed to meet.  I know it’s a novella, but to be honest, I was hoping for a little more substance.  Everything moves at a very fast pace and, unless you include the oral scene in the exam room, there was only one sex scene.  For a man whose nickname is Dirty Doctor, I was expecting him to be…well…dirty.  DIRTY DOCTOR is told in dual POVs and comes with a nice HEA.

Dirty Doctor (Steamy Coffee Collection # 2)

My Rating:  

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Steamy Coffee Collection

Filthy Coach

By Amy Brent

Synopsis

What do you do when the sexiest bastard to walk on to a football field happens to need your personal services?

Sam Carson is a washed-up ex-quarterback who’s more famous for his drunken brawls and internet sex tapes than throwing touchdowns. So why did my father, the owner of the Atlanta Trojans, hire Sam to be the new head coach? And what part does he expect me to play in this dangerous game? 

ALLIE WINSTON:  I’m a tough chick playing in a tough man’s game.  I’m a sports image consultant.  It’s my job to make undisciplined football players and unfriendly coaches heroes in the public eye.  But when I’m assigned to make Sam Carson look good, I know that I have my work cut out for me.  Especially when he catches me in the shower diddling myself and moaning his name.  I can’t deny my feelings for Sam, but I can’t deny that I’m also part of a game that’s using Sam as a pawn. I can only hope that he never discovers my treachery, because I can’t imagine my life without Sam in my bed.      

SAM CARSON:  I’ll be the first to admit it.  I’m a baaaad boy.  I drink hard, play hard, and screw hard.  And when I drive my Lambo into the back of a truck, my career as one of the hottest quarterbacks in pro football comes to an end.  For the last few years I’ve been a coach.  When I get an offer to be the head coach of the Atlanta Trojans, I know something is fishy.  Then I meet Allie Winston, the smoking hot daughter of the team owner.  I want her and I know she wants me, but I get the feeling that there’s more than just sexual attraction at play.  Allie seems to be playing a dangerous game, and I won’t stop until I find out exactly what – and who – is going down. 

Review

FILTHY COACH is a very quick read, and the first I’ve read from Amy Brent.  Unfortunately, it was a read that didn’t win me over.

Sam was extremely hard to like in the beginning.  There are manwhores, and then there’s Sam, who really doesn’t seem to think very highly of women.  Here are two examples of his thoughts:
1 – Hers was not the tightest twat I’d ever stuck it in, but it did the trick.
2 – I have noticed an increase in age and a degradation of hotness of the groupies who approach me now.
He certainly does not sound like a charmer.  Women aside, he does seem to want to turn his life around, at least career wise.  Did I feel bad for how he was played by Allie’s father?  Yes, I did.

What can I say about Allie?  Not much because compared to Sam, she was pretty forgettable.

In regards to the story and writing, I noticed a few spelling mistakes, and I didn’t like some of the words used for the sexual scenes (c*nt, squirting and oozing, for example).  I wasn’t a fan of the short sentence clusters or the step-by-step descriptions of what the characters were doing.  I was also deeply disturbed that condoms were non-existent, not only because they’ve only known each other for a day, but also because Sam has been a manwhore for almost thirty years.  If these things don’t bother you, then I’m sure you’d enjoy this short story.

FILTHY COACH is told in dual POVs and appears to be a stand-alone insta-love novella.

Filthy Coach

My Rating:  

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His Undeniable Secret

By Shayla Black

Synopsis

I’m Kayla.
I’m twenty one.
I’m afraid because ever since a sudden, terrible tragedy, I’m alone in the world—except for my brother’s best friend. But now Oliver intends to move back to London.
I’m in love with him. And I have to persuade him to stay…somehow.
Maybe if I tell him I’m a virgin and show him just how far I’m willing to go to keep him, he’ll give in.
Of course, I never expected that he’d be keeping a shocking secret of his own…

Review

His Undeniable Secret is about Kayla, a girl with a huge heart that belongs to Oliver.  Oliver is a man whose best friend died and is helping his sister grieve.  Oliver also has a secret which is causing him to make the decision to go back home to London.

This novella reminds me what I love about Shayla Black.  Her writing creates emotion and passion. I loved that Kayla only had eyes for Oliver and would do anything to keep him from moving back to London.  Oliver was the perfect match for her but he was conflicted because she was his best friend’s sister.  He was also willing to give her up to keep her from entering into his world.

His Undeniable Secret is a great stand alone novella.  It left me wanting to get to know these characters better.  The only thing I wish was that this book was slightly longer so that I could find out more about them.

His Undeniable Secret

My Rating:  

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Phantom Kiss (Chicagoland Vampires 12A)

By Chloe Neill

Synopsis

Vampires generally aren’t afraid of things that go bump in the night, but Merit and Ethan are extra jumpy after a recent attack by a dark sorcerer. So when they learn that someone is messing with graves in Chicago’s cemeteries, stealing skulls and snatching souls, they fear that their powerful foe might be back for even more magical vengeance.

But after a specter begins haunting Cadogan House—and targeting vampires—they realize that they’re being taunted by an altogether different sort of monster. A ghoulish villain straight out of the Windy City’s urban legends is on the prowl—and he won’t stop until he’s killed again…

Review

The wedding day fast approaches for Merit and Ethan.  Both want to be married and thankful that they do not have a long engagement. But on the way to wedded bliss they find themselves in a mystery at a graveyard. They are thankful for the distraction because Merit’s family has complete control over the wedding.

Phantom Kiss is a great novella for this series.  Still packed with action and humour that we expect from this series but also was a little lighter though it did have a little drama in the mix. The personalities of all the characters still shined through.

I love the relationship that Chloe Neill has written for Merit and Ethan.  We definitely get to see the dynamic that that they have between them while they figure out who is haunting their home. They are perfect for each other and Ethan is the perfect leader for Cadogan.

This novella makes me want to read the whole series again to revisit how Merit and Ethan got their star.  Even though I don’t want this series to end, I can’t wait to find out what is in store for them next.

Phantom Kiss

My Rating:  5 Hearts

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