Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Ruby's Choice by D.F. Jones ~ Review

Title: Ruby's Choice (Ditch Lane Diaries #1)
Author: D.F. Jones
Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance
Length: 184 pages
Publisher: Indie
Release Date: July 23, 2015
Source: Purchased
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Ditch Lane Diaries: Ruby’s Choice is the debut novel by D.F. Jones and book one of the Ditch Lane Diaries. Ruby’s Choice is a coming of age story set in the late 1970’s in Middle Tennessee with a splash of paranormal which will blossom in the second and third books of the series. Ruby’s Choice-Everglade, Tennessee, 1977 Stuck in the Middle with Two Ever since Ruby discovered an amber-encased spider web in the Campbell Ridge Cave, she has had dreams of births, deaths and glimpses into the future. Ruby’s dreams have foretold the daughter of her high school friend, Cathy, the death of her beloved Aunt Sammie, and the coming of a new love in her life. Ruby’s shift is coming to a close at Everglade General Store. As she stacks the last row of bath soap, Ruby recalls the delicious dream she had the night before. In the dream, a gorgeous guy is kissing a tickle spot, just behind her left earlobe, sending shivers up her spine. If only that dream could come true, instead of the one where a state trooper gives her a seventy-five dollar speeding ticket! Ruby snaps back to reality when she hears the store’s front door bells chime. If she didn’t know any better, she’d say the frickin’ Adonis from her sexy dream just walked through the door. Reed Jackson and Brent Brown introduce themselves to Ruby as members of the local baseball team her brother, George, manages. Brent mentions they specifically came out to the store to meet George’s hot, little sister. Ruby is slightly confused when she hears Reed murmur Tap It under his breath, but then she remembers the rumor going around campus about Reed and Brent’s dating game, where the two best friends compete to have a girl profess undying love to one of them. And Tap It is a winner takes all—all of what, though, Ruby has no clue. Ruby decides that she’ll play along, but according to her rules. She’ll suss out if either of these players is worthy of her love and respect. One thing is for sure, Ruby is no pawn. Who will be Ruby’s Choice? 


**********

On the surface, Ruby's Choice doesn't read like much of a paranormal romance. Many of the struggles Ruby fights against are ones that any young woman could encounter. But if you look a little deeper, you'll see the supernatural forces at work in her life. Not just in her life, but in the lives of her closest friends as well. This supernatural force becomes more and more prevalent as the story continues through Ruby's younger life. I enjoyed the nice, gradual introduction to the supernatural aspects of this world.

There is a ton of manipulation and game-playing between Ruby and her two love interests. At first, it was a little funny - typical college dating games - but after taking up most of the story, it did get a little tiresome. I was ready for everyone to grow up and move on, but it took too long to happen.

Once it did happen, things really took a great turn. Facing past mistakes, growing into a better person. and learning to live with loss. But that ending....

Overall, this was a fun read from a debut author. The ending was not my style - but for personal storyline preferences, not for any concrete wrongness about it. I just felt like I had read the whole story and it hadn't really mattered in the long run after all. The ending fit the story well, it just wasn't quite a fit for me.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Wounds to Bear by Terra Wolf ~ Review

Title: Wounds to Bear (Heart of the Bear #1)
Author: Terra Wolf, Lily Marie
Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Lilyhart Pub
Release Date: August 18, 2015
Source: Purchased
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

An old enemy… 

Roman Black’s past has finally caught up with him – and he isn’t the only one paying for his mistakes. 

A beautiful, curvy woman… 

Dr. Jenna Morgan is running from her own past – and hopes to find her place in the small town of Pine Heart. 

When a wounded bear shows up at her door, she discovers that the rumors about this small town are true, and that one of those shifters is bleeding all over her front porch. She treats him, and learns that he was shot protecting a group of shifter and human kids who are now being held by an old enemy bent on revenge. 

Two hearts, one goal. 

Roman’s family joins together to find them – but it will be Roman who has to end this, redeem himself to his family, and to the woman who has stolen the heart of the bear. 

This is a standalone story, with an HEA. 


**********
This book starts out with quite an unusual introduction into the world of shifters. I had to assume that the new vet, Jenna, knew all about them or she would have had a heart attack when a bear showed up on her porch. 

I was a little surprised to see that Jenna was allowed to go into the woods to help track down the children. As a human, she was vulnerable and just slowed them down. It was hard to accept that they couldn't have convinced or made her stay behind somehow.

Roman's story is a bit of a mystery. He's the mysterious alpha hiding his past from her. But since his past is the whole reason the kids were taken, he's going to have to confront it sooner than he wanted to. It felt a little staged though. Parts of the history just seemed a little too much. 

As with many shifter stories, Jenna nad Roman fall in love quickly. I really wish there was more to their story together, more time for them to really bond, and more time for them to really fall in love. 

Monday, April 24, 2017

A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison ~ Review

Title: A Harvest of Thorns
Author: Corban Addison
Genre: Adult, Suspense
Length: 368 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: January 24, 2017
Source: Amazon Vine
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

A beloved American corporation with an explosive secret. A disgraced former journalist looking for redemption. A corporate executive with nothing left to lose.

In Dhaka, Bangladesh, a garment factory burns to the ground, claiming the lives of hundreds of workers, mostly young women. Amid the rubble, a bystander captures a heart-stopping photograph—a teenage girl lying in the dirt, her body broken by a multi-story fall, and over her mouth a mask of fabric bearing the label of one of America’s largest retailers, Presto Omnishops Corporation.

Eight thousand miles away, at Presto’s headquarters in Virginia, Cameron Alexander, the company’s long-time general counsel, watches the media coverage of the fire in horror, wondering if the damage can be contained. When the photo goes viral, fanning the flames of a decades old controversy about sweatshops, labor rights, and the ethics of globalization, he launches an investigation into the disaster that will reach farther than he could ever imagine - and threaten everything he has left in the world.

A year later, in Washington, D.C., Joshua Griswold, a disgraced former journalist from the Washington Post, receives an anonymous summons from a corporate whistleblower who offers him confidential information about Presto and the fire. For Griswold, the challenge of exposing Presto’s culpability is irresistible, as is the chance, however slight, at redemption. Deploying his old journalistic skills, he builds a historic case against Presto, setting the stage for a war in the courtroom and in the media that Griswold is determined to win—both to salvage his reputation and to provoke a revolution of conscience in Presto’s boardroom that could transform the fashion industry across the globe.


**********
This was quite the exciting story. Corporate intrigue, jornalistic investigations, greed, redemption, death, justice, and so many other things all wrapped up into a very nice package. Based loosely on a true court case, we start at the beginning, with a horrible 'accident' that should have never happened. 

We follow the investigation of journalist Joshua Griswold as he learns to navigate the tricky waters of several foreign countries. With rules drastically different than the US - bribes, favors, and flat out lies are the best way for him to get information. As Joshua uncovers more and more of what really goes on in the garment factories, a sad story of greed unfolds.

I found this story to be incredibly fascinating. The cultured and people shown were brought to life on every page, and there was just enough revealed at every turn to keep me wanting to know more. There were some personal moments woven into the story, and I'm not sure if they were my favorites. While they gave opportunities to learn more about Joshua and the others, they probably my least favorite parts of the story.

With an interesting resolution, one that I didn't quite see coming, and an unexpected hero, A Harvest of Thorns was a great story.

**I voluntarily read a review copy of this book**

Friday, April 21, 2017

Tiger Time by Marissa Dobson ~ Review

Title: Tiger Time (Alaskan Tigers #1)
Author: Marissa Dobson
Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance
Length: 225 pages
Publisher: Sunshine Press
Release Date: November 21, 2012
Source: Purchased
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Tabitha Leigh has no idea her life is about to change. Until now, she’s been living a quiet life, unaware danger stalks her.

Ty Reynolds has been watching Tabitha from a distance to see if she would go through “the change.” When she finally does, he sees more in her than just the future of their kind. Now that she is embracing her were-tiger, he must tell her she is the Queen of the Tiger . . . with a bounty on her head.

Tabitha must be protected at all cost. She has to embrace her future and her mate or it will be the end of everything she’s just come to know and hadn’t realized she needed.


**********
I have a love for all types of cat shifters, so tigers seemed right up my alley. Tabitha was a fun character, but she suffered from the same lack of disbelief that I find quite often in paranormal stories. She was just too accepting of the fact that everything was changing. Perehaps shock plays into this a little bit, but I don't know if I would be inviting a person that claims he turns into a tiger into my home after knowing them for such a short period of time.

Ty, as an alpha male, was strong, demanding, and always in charge. But he was just too much. I wanted to see more of his softer side, of his nurturing side. It seemed like too much time was taken showing that he was a tough as nails leader that got stuff done. While Tabitha did stand up to his take charge nature (which was a relief), I wanted to see him take advice, be wrong, or work with more of a team to round his character out a little more.

The suspense and danger in Tiger Time seemed a little forced. There was no way to keep Tabitha safe, the bad guys knew what was going on (until the breaking moment) and were always one step ahead. It just didnt' seem too believable. I also didn't fully understand why they wanted her dead. The reason was given, it just didn't seem like a reasonable one - but we are dealing with crazy people, so maybe I shouldn't have been surprised.

As a series, I had expected to have some more resolution to the story than I did. While some things are wrapped up, there's a lot left hanging to pull you into the next book.

Forever Him by Jeanne St. James ~ Cover Reveal


Forever Him (An Obsessed Novella)
Jeanne St. James
Publication date: May 7th 2017
Genres: Erotica, Romance
This is not just a love story, it’s an obsession…
I can’t keep my eyes off the tall, dark, and confident man who stops in the coffee shop every morning. I want this stranger more than I’ve ever wanted anyone before, even though I only know his first name. As an author, my imagination is my ultimate writing tool, men like Kane my muse. And the minute he leaves, I’m overcome with fantasies I can’t control and my fingers fly across the keyboard, … until one day, I almost snap. My embarrassing outburst has me running out the door when he catches me and takes me to his home.
Though it’s risky, I can’t resist him. And with one kiss, he now owns me. This man will capture my sanity and trap it forever. He’ll steal me one piece at a time until he possesses me completely. He’ll ruin me for any other man. But I don’t want anyone else, for it’ll always be forever him.
Note: All books in the Obsessed series are stand-alone novellas. It is intended for audiences over 18 years of age since it includes explicit sexual situations, including BDSM.


Author Bio:
JEANNE ST. JAMES is an erotic romance author who loves an Alpha male (or two). She was only thirteen when she started writing since it gave her an escape from teenage angst! Her first paid published piece was an erotic story in Playgirl magazine. Her first erotic romance novel, Banged Up, was published in 2009. She is happily owned by farting French bulldogs. She writes M/F, M/M, and M/M/F ménages.
She has a few new releases coming up in 2017. So keep an eye on her website at www.jeannestjames.com or sign up for her newsletter: http://www.jeannestjames.com/newslettersignup

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Divine by Blood by P.C. Cast ~ Review

Title: Divine by Blood (Partholon #3)
Author: P.C. Cast
Genre: Adult, Fantasy
Length: 443 pages
Publisher: Luna Books
Release Date: September 1, 2007
Source: Purchased
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

Morrigan Christine Parker finds that turning 18 carries a heavy weight when you're the only daughter of Rhiannon MacCallan, disgraced high priestess to the goddess Epona, in Cast's down-home follow-up to 2006's Divine by Choice. After Rhiannon betrayed Epona, the goddess bestowed her favor on Rhiannon's look-alike, Shannon Parker. Rhiannon promised her allegiance to the evil god Pryderi, but recanted after Morrigan's birth, giving the child over to Epona's protection and the care of Shannon's parents. Now Morrigan comes of age and learns more about her heritage from her adoptive grandparents and the wind-borne whispers of Pryderi and Epona. While visiting the Alabaster Caverns State Park and exploring her power over rocks and crystals, Morrigan is unexpectedly transported to the mystical realm of Partholon, where she must find Shannon and fulfill her destiny.


**********
We're jumping forward to the next generation of Partholon. With both Rhiannon and Shannon having daughters, the stage is set for the next generation to take center stage. But it all happens in a bit of an upexpected way. Again, the parallels between the two worlds are quite striking and seem to be aligning for some big new event to take place.

This big event is the birth of two girls - and sets off a struggle for both to find themselves. Even though they are worlds apart, their lives seem to mirror each other's in many ways. But there are some unexpected twists. The bad guys show regret and repentance, and the good guys doubt. The daughters both struggle to find where they might belong in their world, and then those worlds collide once again, then the struggle must begin all over again.

Pryderi, the dark god, is making a big grab for power. It's quite sneaky and I think I enjoy his inventive and manipulative techniques. They fit his shadow god personna quite well, and really add that perfect dark and hidden element to the story and the characters' lives.

We are also introduced to a new realm within Partholon that I found fascinating. We meet new divine characters and explore new cultures. This was my favorite part. I hope it carries on through future books in the series.


Partholon

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Her True Match by Paige Tyler ~ Review

Title: Her True Match (X-Ops #6)
Author: Paige Tyler
Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance, Romantic Suspense
Length: 352 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Release Date: March 7, 2017
Source: NetGalley
Reviewed by: Jasmyn

After a long game of cat-and-mouse

Feline shifter Dreya Clark picks the wrong penthouse to rob and ends up arrested by sexy detective Braden Hayes. But Braden isn’t the only one who’s been watching the cat burglar. Agents from the Department of Covert Operations swoop in to offer her a deal. If she wants to stay out of jail, she’ll have to work with them—and pair up with the hot cop. Great.

Danger throws this unlikely pair together

Braden isn’t thrilled about the DCO meddling in his investigation. He’s been chasing Dreya for years. Thrown together on a dangerous covert mission, fur flies and temperatures flare. But when danger closes in on them, their game of cat and mouse turns deadly-serious, and they’ll have to rely on each other to make it out alive.


**********
We meet Dreya, the master theif, in a previous book. She's quite impressive - able to get into just about anywhere using a mix of her incredible intelligence and her shifter abilities. But she may have taken a mis-step and landed herself in jail. Braden, a police detective, has been tracking her and finally catches to her.

This one seemed to have a lot of downtime. When the DCO sweeps in and offers to keep Dreya out of jail, she goes into some intensive training and testing. While I thought it was interesting to see their set-up and recruiting/training methonds - it never seemed to end. I wanted more in the mission and with Dreya and Braden out in the field. The time they did spend in the field, seemed a little forced and overdone.

I did get to see some of my favorite characters from series, and I do feel like the series storyline was moved forward - but just a bit. I've gotten used to some seriously action-packed stories and this one just let down my expectation a little in that regard. I highly recommend reading this series in order. While each book has a stand-along romance, there is a lot going on in the X-Ops world that really builds from one book to the next.

*I voluntarily read a review copy of this book*


X-Ops