I love the holiday stories in the Silver Town Wolf series. The festive atmosphere, the way the town comes together to celebrate, and, of course, the romance. I really loved that this one had quite a touch more of the paranormal than just the wolves. We got to see ghosts through the eyes of Meghan MacTire and her sisters. As Meghan tries to help the spirits move on, she worries about telling the love of her life (and potential mate) about her unusual abilities and other secrets from her past.
As she navigates these tricky conversations with Sheriff Peter Jorgenson (who’s hiding his own secrets as well), her past comes back to haunt her - only not in ghostly form. Real-life flesh and blood crazy people show up - one so much more so than the other - and begin the worst of the two has her death all planned out.
But he may have bitten off more than he can chew - because our super evil bad guy has a secret history of his own that’s about to come out. And if the town hadn’t already rallied behind Meghan and her sisters, well, they want their own revenge for past wrongs now.
There was plenty of action in Home for the Holidays, but there were also long periods of inactivity. I feel like the story was just a tad drawn out. While I loved seeing Meghan and Peter become more comfortable around each other, there didn’t see to be a real flow to it. It jumped along in fits and bursts, that if smoothed out could have made the story have a better flow.
I will definitely be reading more of the Silver Town Wolf series. The way you get to re-visit past couples and get to know the whole town is amazing, and I love to go visit.
**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**
Title: The Man in the Dragon Mask
Author: Amanda Roberts
Genre: Historical Fiction
And A Secret That Could Destroy An Empire
At the dawn of the Ming Dynasty, the emperor will do anything to ensure the future of his empire. Building the Forbidden City in fulfillment of his father's dreams is only the beginning.
But few people share the emperor's vision.
When a consort's betrayal has devastating consequences that rock the imperial court, the emperor discovers that the fight for the dragon throne has only begun.
About Amanda Roberts
Amanda Roberts is a USA Today bestselling author who has been living in China since 2010. She has an MA in English from the University of Central Missouri and has been published in magazines, newspapers, and anthologies around the world. Amanda can be found all over the Internet, but her home is AmandaRobertsWrites.com.
I was quite lost at the beginning of the story. While the book is part of the Texas Sized Mystery series, they are marketed as being able to read as stand-alones. I feel like I really needed to have known things from other books here. It jumped right into characters and places, and I had no idea who they were and there was no introduction to them.
Once I figured out who was who, and what was what, they story got a lot better. But I still had some problems with it. For one, our victim seems to be a collossal idiot, and his family really didn’t seem to care about him at all. I sort of understand why his wife wouldn’t, but the rest, while putting on displays of sorrow, it didn’t feel real to me. Perhaps because they weren’t allowed to really become more than part of the background scenery instead of real part of the story.
The whole time, the book points to one person as the murderer and paints them in a very unflattering light. I get putting out a false lead or two, but this seemed to derail the entire investigation, and I’m surprised they managed to figure out who really did it because the police didn’t seem to be really looking into anything. Perhaps it’s because this was a shorter story, and there wasn’t enough time to really dive deep into the mystery, but I really expected a bit more.
**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**
About Derek Shupert
Derek Shupert is an emerging Science Fiction Author known for his captivating dystopian storylines and post-apocalyptic-laden plots. With various books and anthologies underway, he is also the author of the Afflicted series and Sentry Squad.
Outside of the fantastical world of sci-fi, Derek serves as the Vice President at Woodforest National Bank. During his free time, he enjoys reading, exercising, and watching apocalyptic movies and TV shows like Mad Max and The Walking Dead. Above all, he is a family man who cherishes nothing more than quality time spent with his loved ones.
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I really enjoyed the concept behind Seductive Secrets and I wanted to fall in love with it so much, but there was just too much I couldn't connect with. From the characters themselves, to them falling in love, to the grand solving of the mystery - it was never quite right.
To start with, Lady Willow came off as a brat. She couldn't keep herself away from the men long enough to have a conversation with her family - and she was totally surprised when she found out people thought she was a loose woman. Her attitude towards Sir Conrad tipped her into the "she doesn't deserve him" category as she degraded and talked down to him every chance she got until *poof* she was suddenly in love.
Sir Conrad started off really well, but after the incident in the cabin - well - he found himself in "he doesn't deserve her" territory. So now I have heroes who don't deserve each other and are at the same time undeserving of each other. They both really needed to grow up - which they just started to do by the end of the story.
The missing ruby was a great twist to the story. I had no idea who took it until Willow and Conrad had their own ah-ha! moment. That was an amazing part of the story (but Willow's prior sleuthing only made her seem more like a spoiled child). However, this wonderful moment was ruined by their plan to return the stone and make everything right again. No one in their right mind would have believed what they presented as the truth - let alone a castle full of knights and nobility.
Not the book for me, unfortunately.
©2019 Alana Delacroix
Who designed your book covers?
Natasha Snow at http://natashasnow.com/. It was as if she read my mind because that was almost exactly as I pictured Iliana. I like having covers that feature my female characters.
If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Cal Olin is an older Gavin Leatherwood, who played Nicholas Scratch in the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. And Iliana is Constance Wu, who is an incredible actor.
Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
I love hearing what you think! Like it, love it, have questions? I want to know so email me at email@example.com.
Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination?
Imagination for Cal. I don’t know any resurrected Eagle Knights. Iliana is mostly imagination but her job as a forensic anthropologist was inspired by a woman I worked with about 20 years ago. She was the coolest, so smart and competent.
Do your characters seem to hijack the story or do you feel like you have the reigns of the story?
I’m a pantser, which means I go in with minimal plotting, so sometimes it seems as if everything hijacks the story. Although I know the ending (it’s romance, so they always get together!), I only know a few stops on the way. If I plot too much I get bored writing. I wear a bracelet that’s a quote from JRR Tolkein: Not all who wander are lost. Although the line refers to Aragorn’s time in the Wild, I like to use it as a reminder to let the story unravel itself.
If your book had a candle, what scent would it be?
What did you edit out of this book?
Oh gosh. So much. I have a document called “bits” that contains lines and sections I deleted. It’s 5,000 words. Some of those sections are the journal entries from Iliana’s mother, describing her side of the story. I liked them but took it out because it pulled attention from Cal and Iliana.
About Alana Delacroix
Alana Delacroix is a paranormal romance writer based in Toronto, Canada. Her Masked Arcana trilogy is available through Kensington's Lyrical Press, and her Immortal Protector series launches Fall 2019. She is an introvert's introvert who loves true crime, war, and horror podcasts and is very paranoid. Alana is also addicted to advice columns.
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Amina is special - or as her father would say - a freak. With the ability to move things with her mind, she dreams of joining the Interplanetary Peace Squad, but her family won’t hear of it. So she sneaks away one night, takes a leap of faith, and joins the training program. This beginning portion of the book was a bit choppy and rough. The initial interactions Amina had with people at the training program were a bit cliched. They were very stereotypical - the shy girl, the flirty rich girl, the cute slightly older guy every girl wanted.
Once we got more into the heart of the story, things took a really great turn for the better. People started becoming a little more dynamic (but still a tad on the cliche side), and personalities started showing up. Amina is assigned her first training mission, and she has a chance to show the crew and her captain (the hot guy everyone wants) that she can handle herself. And she handles herself well, but not perfectly - which is great.
The romance that has been budding throughout the story didn’t always seem to fit in. There were too many times that the mission should have fallen apart because of the flirty-times going on. Eventually, the romance starts to straighten itself out, and by the end, I felt more like it was a natural thing between the two characters. But getting there was a bit rough.
**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**
Title: A Whole New Duke
Author: Samantha Holt
Genre: Historical Romance
The Dark Duke they call him.
And he certainly matches up to his name. From his looks to his constantly furrowed brow, Miss Beatrice Edgerton is under no illusions as to the status of their arranged marriage.
It will be very much one of convenience. With him conveniently providing the title her family so desperately wants and her family bringing in plenty of money for his dilapidated home. She is simply grateful he is younger than her first husband.
Lord Morton, Duke of Hartwich, is only a little perturbed by the vibrant Beatrice. After all, he sets her straight from the very first day of their marriage—this is one of mutual benefit. In one way only. She can expect no affection or romance from him.
Because, frankly, he is incapable of such things. Being a one-legged duke with a slightly dark past brings enough challenges without him having to worry about a wife too. His days of concern for anyone are long gone.
Unfortunately, It is not only the duke’s dark demeanor she has to deal with. Someone is trying to cause trouble for them but they cannot fathom who or why.
Grace is determined to make the best of the situation, even whilst spending Christmas with the duke alone in the eerie Hartwich Hall. Why, perhaps she might even be able to change the duke’s mind about their relationship.
Especially after they share a fiery kiss…or three…
Excerpt from A Whole New Duke
© 2019 Samantha Holt
“I’m very tired,” she said through a yawn.
“You need to stay awake, Bea. You may have a concussion.”
“Concussion?” Her words sounded slurred to her but she was not certain they actually were.
“When one is struck on the head, it can make one feel a little strange. I have suffered it myself falling from horses.”
“Oh.” She put an arm over her face to block out the unwelcome light but Adam pulled her arm away from her face and she scowled at him.
“You need to stay awake, Bea. Just until we can be certain you are feeling better.”
“I would rather sleep,” she muttered.
“Mrs. Howard, will you get some ice and tea, please?”
Bea didn’t see the housekeeper leave but she heard her footsteps scurrying off. Adam cupped her cheek and she sank gratefully into the comforting warmth of his touch. “You are quite handsome,” she said softly.
“And you are still charming somehow.”
“I like it when you touch me.”
A smile grazed his lips. “I like touching you.”
“See? That was not so hard to admit was it?”
“Especially because you will likely not remember a thing of what you said tonight.”
“I know exactly what I am saying,” she declared, although the words did seem strange and still incoherent. She yawned and closed her eyes.
“Tell me of this intruder.”
Opening her eyes, she frowned. “It was dark but he was tall.”
“Taller than me.”
“Yes. No...Perhaps.” She let her eyelids flutter shut and found the darkness behind them quite pleasant.
“Anything else you can recall?” she heard him say but it was too hard to respond. Her jaw felt heavy and her tongue thick. “Bea?” A hand tapped her cheek and she ripped her eyes open.
“Stop,” she protested.
“You need to tell me all, Bea.”
“He seemed skinny but strong. He pushed me hard.” She forced her attention to his concerned features. “Adam, will you let me sleep with you tonight? I do not want to be alone.”
His lips tilted. “You will not be alone. I promise.”
About Samantha Holt
SA Today Bestselling author Samantha Holt lives in a small village in England with her twin girls and a dachshund called Duke. If you’re not sure where to start why not try…
▶ Amelia and the Viscount (Bluestocking Brides #1) for a fun, slightly hot shorter length read. Meet the Chadwick sisters and follow their adventures in each of their standalone stories.
▶ You’re the Rogue That I Want (Rogues of Redmere #1) is a longer read with heat, witty dialogue, a feisty heroine and adventure. All books in the series are standalone.
▶ Sinful Confessions is the first in the Cynfell Brothers Series. These are all novella length and standalone–ideal for a quick dip into the world of the sexy Cynfell brothers.
▶ Wake Me With a Kiss is a sweet, fairytale romance. Twists on Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella are also available if you love a clean, fun read.
▶ To Steal a Highlander’s Heart is a full length dive into the world of sexy highlanders. For those who love braw Scots, some steamy scenes, and medieval romance, this series is a perfect escape.
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I feel like Overruled by Fate really hit the nail on the head with how living as nobility - or within the world of the nobility - really was. Madeline is told she will be marrying a much older man - and she's lucky that he's a good man. Her feelings are not taken into consideration, because her father knows what's best for her. Only too late does she realize that her feelings for her childhood non-noblility companion are much more that she first believed.
Said childhood companion, Nathaniel, has known his feelings, but he also accepts his place and knows that nothing will come of them - at least he thinks he's accepted it. When Madeline's marriage is announced he goes off the deep end. And while I appreciate his feelings and need to drown his sorrows - his method of drowning said sorrows left me with a bad taste in my mouth for him. And he doesn't really improve much until the very end. While this was probably very historically accurate - I wanted I little bit more out of my hero than I got.
It took a long time for the HEA to appear. And I really appreciated that. It wasn't easy for this couple, but even when it was hard, the author found highlights and good things for them to be occupied with. There was plenty of pining for each other and scheming at times, and when the king makes an appearance I just felt awful for Madeline (but no spoilers so I can't tell you why).
There is plenty of intrigue, betrayal, plots and plans woven into the storyline that wrap around our main characters, forcing them to make hard decisions and sometimes take paths they wouldn't have otherwise chosen. When our couple does finally get together (this is a romance after all), it was sweet and touching. I felt like they had finally beat the odds stacked against them. A great story that has a feeling of epicness to it.
About Katie Cross
My world revolves around my husband (who is a major hottie), my precious kids, my Vizsla’s who act like children, and the mountains.
I wear hiking boots instead of heels when I need to feel powerful, and on a bad day, I love a weightlifting workout. Actually, I love it on a good day.
I don’t eat bread because my thyroid doesn’t like it, although there are days I miss it. Especially ciabatta. Sweet potatoes are kind of my thing. Cookies too.
I write because I never stopped.
Author of The Network Series, The Dragonmaster Trilogy, and The Health and Happiness Society.
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