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Crave

By Dani Rene

Synopsis

Samael
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Can love overcome hate?
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When I first laid eyes on the perfect little blonde,
I didn’t think she’d change my life.
But the first time I tasted her, felt her, took her,
I knew she was mine.
I laid a wordless claim because as much as I desired her,
I couldn’t have her.
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I craved the dark, she filled me with light.
I loved delivering pain, she craved it.
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Opposites merged by circumstance.
Hearts melded by passion.
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Angel
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Can light defeat darkness?
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I should have feared him.
Everything about him was drenched in the darkness he exuded.
But one glance into his cobalt eyes, and I knew I was his.
My heart allowed him entry, as did my body.
And after the first time, my soul recognized his.
Desired what he delivered.
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I craved his darkness, he bathed in my light.
I submitted to his desires, he craved my very being.
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Running from him wasn’t an option.
Fate bound us in its intricate pattern.
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*This is a dark romance, suitable for mature audiences, 18+ ONLY. Strong sexual themes and violence, which could trigger emotional distress, are found in this story. Certain scenes are graphic and could be upsetting to some. This story is NOT for everyone. Proceed with caution. Discretion is advised. This is book one of the Forbidden Series, but can be read as a standalone. Each book will feature a different couple. There is NO cliffhanger.

Review

Crave will take you to a place that will make you cry, shake with fear and make your skin crawl, it is everything a dark and erotic story has and so much more but you need to be strong and Angel is an incredible character and shows what the mind and heart are capable of.

Crave is dark and even I struggled with the storyline and at times I became desolate and I admit right here at some points I skimmed a paragraph as I could not cope with what Angel was going through.  I struggled with the hurt and degradation to her at the hands of old men.  There is so much darkness in this story and you are not given light until the last few chapters and by then I was so depressed and raw, upon finishing Crave it took me awhile to process this story.  When Samael found those tapes in his dad’s office that was the final straw for me, it broke my heart.

Crave is dark, more it will break your soul and for a moment in time you will think humanity has forgotten Angel and then Samael does eventually save her and can I say the ending restored my hope but left me raw.

I do not think I could ever read this again but I am so glad I read Angel and Samuel’s story, I am not brave enough to return.

Crave

My Rating: 

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Royal Games (The Royals Of Monterra # 3)

By Sariah Wilson

Synopsis

Genesis Kelley didn’t just get her heart broken. The aspiring veterinarian had it crushed in front of millions of viewers on the dating reality show Marry Me. Now, just as she’s getting her life and dignity back together, her royal heartbreaker, Prince Rafael of Monterra, has landed in Frog Hollow, Iowa. And he’s renting out her aunt’s guest cottage.

Deceiving TV audiences for his brother’s sake cost Rafe the girl of his dreams. But he’s going to fix it, even if it means moving from his mountain-kingdom home to small-town Iowa. A prince doesn’t give up on his rightful princess—especially once he realizes Genesis is in deeper danger than she knows.

Between fixing her truck, whisking her off to Monterra for a whirlwind date, and charming the entire town, Rafe is thawing the ice around Genesis’s heart. Will it be enough to earn back her trust, protect her from her past—and sweep her into a real-life fairy tale?

Review

ROYAL GAMES is the third book in The Royals Of Monterra series and after meeting Genesis in the previous book, I was really looking forward to reading her story because she was so nice and sweet.  Sadly, I did not enjoy her story and it was all because of her.

I understand that she was embarrassed at being tricked by Rafe on Marry Me, but I felt she was too fixated on how Rafe “deceived” and “lied” to her during the filming, especially when she knows he was under contract to keep his real identity a secret.  She flat out refused to hear his apology and spent almost the entire book treating him like crap.  I also felt, and I hate to say this, that she was just too stupid to live.  Her life was being threatened, but she refused Rafe’s protection and security because she had pepper spray and had taken self-defence classes.  But then she had a panic attack when a stranger sat down for a meal at her diner, which kind of threw her whole “I can protect myself” claim out the window.  When she was kidnapped and learnt that Rafe was only able to save her life because of a secret tracking device he had planted on her, she got angry.  When he left after she got in a fit and told him to leave, she got angry. When she found out that he paid for her hospital bills, she got angry.  Seriously, there was absolutely no pleasing this woman.  I was frustrated with her by the 30% mark, and her constant whining, complaining and stupid choices did nothing to win me over.

I liked Rafe, who did so many things trying to earn Genesis’ forgiveness and win her heart, but to be honest, I lost a little respect for him because of how much crap he was willing to put up with.  Her behaviour showed that she didn’t deserve him and I wouldn’t have shed a tear if he had just said “screw it” and walked away.

ROYAL GAMES is told only in Genesis’ POV and while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.  As with the previous two books in this series, there is no sex, not even the behind-the-closed-door stuff.  It includes the occasional flashback to their alone time on Marry Me⎯which was sweet⎯and it comes with a HEA.

Royal Games (The Royals Of Monterra # 3)

My Rating:  

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The Royals Of Monterra Series

Techy (Devils Souls MC #2)

By LeAnn Ashers

Synopsis

Alisha

My story isn’t a very conventional one. I met my man online, which isn’t a shocking thing nowadays.

I sure didn’t know that he would rescue me from hell.

I had been stuck in hell with no way out. Then Techy swooped in with guns blazing and took me out of there. A knight in shining leather.

I didn’t expect to feel what I feel; that I would fall in love, that I would feel safe and protected.

I had never felt that before.

Until Techy.

Techy is a member of the Devil’s Souls MC, the most notorious MC in Texas. They love hard and fight harder. You mess with their family, hell is something you’d beg for.

Shit hits the fan when someone from my past comes to get what my dead father never gave back to him.

My name is Alisha and this is my story.

Techy

A man is after my woman.

He won’t be a man much longer.

He dares to try and take her from me?

Hell is something he’ll beg for. Because nobody, and I mean nobody, looks in Alisha’s direction in a way I don’t like. If they do? They’ll be eating their teeth.

If you threaten her? Death is an easy way out.

I will do whatever it takes to protect her.

This book has a HEA, with no cheating and a obsessed alpha. If you don’t like instalove this book isn’t for you.

Review

Firstly I love the cover of Techy!

Techy is definitely instalove with plenty of MC drama and action and for me it was too fast and I struggled at times with the flow of the story.  I wanted to stop and savour some moments and we just jumped ahead at times too frequently.

One story that did intrigue me is Vinney, Trey and Lani, now that had me wanting to know more about those three.

I admit have read an obscene amount of MC romance and there were just some situations in this story that just were a little out there.  Some of the scenes with the women and fighting other women and the over the top reactions just wore me down and I became annoyed with them.  Also they are apparently under threat and there is no lock downs, they go out to dinner without protection and I kept wondering at some point it is all going to come undone and then when it does the location is just bizarre when all through the book I hear of all the gadgets protecting the mc club and the tight security.

However I do want to say I loved the beginning when Techy rescues and helps in the recovery of Alisha, he definitely cares and loves her back from an awful physical encounter.  Alisha is a very naive character after being locked away by her father but I did enjoy watching their connection grow in the emotional and physical sense.

This is my second book by this author.

Techy  (Devils Souls MC #2)

My Rating: 

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The Castle (Endgame #3)

By Skye Warren

Synopsis

I’m safe in the ivory tower Gabriel Miller made for me. That’s what he says. Enemies lurk outside, waiting to strike. An army of enemies held back by these walls.

Except some animal instinct warns me the danger is much closer. It’s already here. Is Gabriel Miller my protector or my enemy? Is this house a castle or a cage?

There’s nowhere for me to go, no one left for me to trust.

No escape from a past determined to capture its prize.

Review

Firstly the Prologue gives us more of the night of Avery’s 18th birthday and it helped me return to this world of many games being played.

The Castle was breathtaking and brilliant and when Avery finally makes all the connections in her memory from her childhood it created that moment in books where you take a breathe.  As a reader you knew major secrets were hidden but there trying to be revealed – just fantastic.  This instalment is fast paced and you will be constantly on guard with Avery waiting for that moment when all the people in the game make their play.

Avery was strong in this final instalment of the trilogy and Gabriel was dominant and ultimately her protector and I loved the ending.

I loved the addition of Penny for Avery and I was so excited reading the thank you notes from the author that we will be having a story on Penny and Damon.  I have actually held an interest in Damon Scott from the first book and considering all his connections I cannot wait as I feel he has so much more to reveal and also perhaps Avery and Gabriel will make an appearance too!

I read this in two days, could not put down and I will be returning to read this series again as I just connected to Avery and loved her whole story.

Avery and Gabriel’s passionate sexual scenes were intense and erotic and held so much emotional feelings even amongst all the danger.

Quote: A pawn with ambition. Or a queen with chains

The Castle (Engame #3)

My Rating: 

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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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Below the Surface (Witness #5)

By Heather D’Agostino

Synopsis

Things aren’t always as they seem…

I’ve lived by that motto for most of my life. I’ve hid who I am, who I used to be, and what I’ve done from anyone who dares to get close to me. At nineteen I lost my parents. I thought nothing in the world could be more painful. I was wrong.

When I met Leo, my world seemed brighter. I felt hope for the first time in months. He promised me a life of luxury, but things aren’t always as they seem. Leo had a dark side, one that he hid from me. He pulled me under and held me captive, making death seem like the only way out.

It took me two years to escape. I ran never looking back until now. My life is finally coming together. I have people I trust, a job, and a safe place to call home, but things aren’t always as they seem.

One night, one phone call, one moment causes it to all crash down. Leo has my sister, and he wants to trade her for me. The one person I can trust is the only one who could also tear me apart… Detective Jeff Horn. He’s got secrets just like me, and seems to understand me better than I do myself.

How do I tell him my darkest secrets? How do I go back to a place that nearly broke me? How do I let him see Below the Surface?sert Synopsis Here

Review

Below the Surface was an amazing read, the leading character for me was Lena and she simply grabbed my heart from the first few pages.  As a reader I thoroughly enjoyed watching her journey from a survivor living Below the Surface of life from a horrific situation to finally breaking through and taking the amazing step of trusting another human being with her life and heart.

To watch Jeff and Lena make their way through so many obstacles, some very scary especially when she had to return to save her sister to them finally connecting on an intimate level was just beautiful story telling.

When Jeff and Lena are finally intimate I took a deep breath, it was just perfect in my eyes, the build up and emotional connection was just so worth the wait and did not disappoint.  I was with them every step of the way and Jeff’s handling of her was just so endearing but also forceful at the right moments for her recovery.

Below the Surface leads you through the story of her traumatic past however I appreciated we were not given too much detail as your own imagination can take you there to that dark place.  As soon as we were going dark the author turns and gives you light to make your way out of this part of the story, it is still sad but done really well in my opinion.

The supporting characters are very funny and help create a family of sorts and I have not read any of the other stories in the witness series, in my opinion you do not have to as this is definitely a standalone.

I could have read so many more chapters on Lena and Jeff and their love story – they were an amazing couple that had so much chemistry, passion and companionship – he was her warrior and brought her back from the darkness that she thought she would live with forever.

Below the Surface (Witness #5)

My Rating: 

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Claiming Grace (Ace Security # 1)

By Susan Stoker

Synopsis

For Logan Anderson, moving on from a traumatic past means moving back to his hometown of Castle Rock, Colorado, to start a personal-security business with his brothers. But it’s not long before Logan runs into Grace Mason, his best friend from high school…and the woman who never answered his letters during his Army years.

Grace was pleasantly surprised to see Logan return to Castle Rock, despite their falling-out ten years ago. Everyone always assumed they would end up together, including Grace, who had eyes only for him. But as Logan eventually escaped their town, Grace got pulled further into her family’s controlling grasp—and farther away from the man she loved.

Now, united by scars both visible and not, the two must fight to free Grace from the suffocating hold of her family. But the Masons won’t let go easily—and they’ll do whatever it takes to keep the couple apart.

Review

CLAIMING GRACE is the first book in the Ace Security series and is also the first book I’ve read from Susan Stoker.  It is a second-chance romance between Logan and Grace, who had feelings for each other in high school, but never acted on them before Logan left for the Army.  Thanks to the actions of others, they both believed the other had led them on and therefore haven’t seen or spoken to each other in ten years.

Ace Security is owned and run by triplet brothers Logan, Blake and Nathan, who created the security firm after their father was killed by their abusive mother, and their primary goal is to provide help and security for abused men.  At the time of writing this review, I read this story over a week ago and I don’t remember much about Logan at all, other than I thought his idea of creating a security company for abused men was brilliant.

Grace stood out more than Logan, but in her case that’s not a good thing.  She’s a nice woman and I was rooting for her to get her HEA with Logan, but I couldn’t relate to her.  I couldn’t understand why she didn’t just tell people what had been going on and then get in her car and go far, far away from her parents.  She’s been mentally and emotionally abused her entire life and yet, at the age of thirty, is still clinging to the hope that some day soon her parents will love her and let her go to live her own life.  As much as I hate to say this, sometimes she was a little too stupid to live.  She would acknowledge that she needed to be careful around her parents, but would then meet them alone in private places.

I have to say that as much as I hated them, her parents are the most memorable characters in this story.  They are so horrible, despicable and cruel that they deserve to be skinned alive for not only how they treated Grace, but how they treated everyone in the community.

CLAIMING GRACE is told in dual POVs and comes with a HEA that I will say was a little cheesy and unrealistic.  The ending also leads us into the second book which will be about Blake and Alexis.

Claiming Grace (Ace Security # 1)

My Rating:  

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Ace Security Series

Riot (Scarred Souls #4)

By Tillie Cole

Synopsis

Stolen by the Arziani Georgian crime mob as a child, 152 was raised and conditioned to be a Mona—the most subservient of the Arziani Blood Pit slaves.

Gorgeous and kind, she has been and under the imprisoning influence of the Type B drug and under the command of the Blood Pit Master’s sister, Mistress Arziani, for most of her life, until the Master calls her back home to Georgia.

He wants her under his total control, and Master always gets what he wants.

But when 152 is gifted to the Blood Pit’s fearsome champion death match fighter as a prize, 152 suddenly finds out that the men who appear most brutal, may just own the kindest hearts. And love may be found, even when living in hell.

Freedom, family, love, 152 will have to fight for what she wants and ultimately make an impossible choice.

Review

Riot is one dark, intense and highly emotional read and at times I had to place this book down and regroup as some scenes are truly horrific and soul destroying.  In saying that the way the characters determination for finding their way from darkness to freedom made me devour this book.

I have not read the other books in the series but could easily follow the past and current storylines.  The author paced this book well and jumped time at parts to keep the story flowing and make sure the reader is not stuck in the darkness at highly emotional scenes for too long so I was thankful for that.

152 and 901 both broke my heart at times and I had such sadness for them and the last quarter of the book well hang on as it is a truly spine tingling read full of action and suspense.  I LOVED the ending as you are given hope, love and family and you definitely need it after the journey you go on.

I would love to read a story on Maya and Maxim as Maya was one of the lights of this book as she gave me hope for 152.

I am not a blood and guts type of girl but even I wanted to jump into the blood pit and slice Master’s head off and another part of this anatomy!  Master has to be one of the cruelest characters I have had to endure and he made my skin tingle with fear for the crazy and twisted man he was and I could never pick his next course of action throughout the book.

Quote: “You are the Arziani Pit Bull You are feared. But to me, you are safety”

Riot (Scarred Souls #4)

My Rating: 

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Worth The Wait (St. James # 1)

By Jamie Beck

Synopsis

Thirteen years ago, Vivi LeBrun was sketching a rooster and eating Oreos when she first met—and fell for—her friend’s brother, David St. James. Since then, her love for David has only intensified thanks to years of friendship with his family, who rescued her from a lonely, tumultuous childhood. As she travels to Block Island to vacation with the St. James siblings, Vivi daydreams about reuniting with David, hoping he’ll finally see her as his soul mate.

After his mother’s death, David distanced himself from his siblings, determined to hide a devastating family secret. Now, he’s brought a new girlfriend along to his homecoming—one who’s pushing for a serious commitment. The last thing he needs on his growing list of problems is his budding attraction to Vivi.

With tensions running high, David’s behavior triggers a series of events that might cost him the love he’s always taken for granted and Vivi the only real family she’s ever known.

Review

WORTH THE WAIT is the first book I’ve read from Jamie Beck, and I found it to be an enjoyable read.

I quite liked Vivi, who is fun, friendly and just a really nice person.  She lost her mother and brother when she was just a child and her father became a drunk to escape.  But despite all that, she remains positive and upbeat.  She has been in love with David since she was thirteen and even at that young age, she never hid her feelings from him.  That takes courage and I admired her for it.  But after waiting in vain for half of her life, she decides it’s time to move on from David and, as is her way, she’s not afraid to tell him exactly what she thinks and feels.

“Vivi, your friendship means everything to me.  I don’t want to lose it.”
“Of course you don’t.  Who would willingly let go of someone who gives everything and asks for nothing in return?”

David is a nice guy, but he’s also a little selfish and I spent a large portion of the story not liking him very much.  He’s dealing with his own personal demons which have caused him to recently push away not only his family, but also Vivi.  He’s always been aware of Vivi’s feelings for him but in all honesty, he never led her on…at least up until now.  His character is a cliché though, in that he didn’t realise exactly how he wanted Vivi until her affection wasn’t available to him anymore.

She’d always been an all-or-nothing girl.  He should have guessed she would treat him likewise.  For years she’d given him her all, and now she had nothing left.

WORTH THE WAIT is told in dual POVs and comes with a very nice HEA.  The story is told in present time but also includes the occasional flashback to events that took place over the past thirteen years.  I found this to be an easy and enjoyable read, and I would read the next book in the series.

Worth The Wait (St. James # 1)

My Rating:  

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St. James Series

Beastly (Phoebe Reede: The Untold Story # 3)

By Michelle Irwin

Synopsis

Not all things are exactly as they appear.

Beau Miller thought his happily ever after had returned in the form of the girl with the seafoam eyes. He never expected a second heartbreak at her hand. 

When her father, Declan Reede, turns up with murder in his eyes, Beau discovers that the break-up might not have been what it seemed. He must solve the mystery if he’s to find his girl.  

How can he and Declan rescue their princess when she’s been taken by someone with beastly intentions? And will they make it in time?

Review

After the scary cliffhanger in PHOBIC, I knew I was going to be in for a rough ride in BEASTLY, but I had my fingers crossed hoping that it wouldn’t be as bad as I feared.  Sadly, it was.  But WOW…what a read!  My heart was pounding for four and a half hours straight as I read this non-stop from beginning to end, and this is definitely a book that you’ll be thinking about days later.

“No one cares that Phoebe’s missin’.  It’s like my heart’s been torn from my chest, and no one else realises the world stopped spinnin’ the moment she disappeared.”

I love Beau and he’s totally a keeper, but I will say that I wanted to strangle him for being so dumb.  Obviously we all know who has taken Phoebe, but he had his suspicions and never voiced them.  WTF???  I realise the story would have been super short if he had, but GRRRRRRR!  I felt bad for him when everyone suspected that he had something to do with Phoebe’s disappearance, because he wouldn’t hurt a fly.  I liked the bond he ended up having with Declan and I really look forward to seeing those two build on their relationship.  I think Declan knows that there is no better man for his little girl than Beau.  Although, I was getting an iffy feeling in the scenes involving Beau and Angel, and if Michelle is reading this, I hope she doesn’t go down “that” road.  I mean, I don’t want to tell an author what to do, but please don’t do “that”.

BEASTLY is told only in Beau’s POV and ends in a really sad cliffhanger, so have some tissues handy.  It cannot be read as a stand-alone, so you do need to read the first two books in the series before starting this one.  It’s usually nice to see Declan again, but it wasn’t this time and my heart broke for him when he realised who had his little girl and what had been done to her.  When it comes to Phoebe, we’ve only scratched the surface of what she suffered, and I think we’ll learn more about it all in PHYSIS, which comes out in April this year and will be told in her POV.

Please Note: This story contains scenes/topics that may be triggers for some people.

Beastly (Phoebe Reede: The Untold Story # 3)

My Rating:  

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Phoebe Reede: The Untold Story Series