Claire Marta & Anna Edwards-Beauty’s War

Oh, these two. When they got together to write this book, they completely did something completely awesome. Beauty’s War blew me right the fuck away and left me gasping. Before we get started, let me just say I love this title. It means different things, depending on where you put the emphasis and what way you are thinking of. I love those kinds of titles, you know. Word play is so awesome, and I appreciate it so much.

Claire and Anna are taking on Roman mythology and modernizing it. I really like the way that they are doing it and spin that they are putting on it. Basically, you have two sides of the eternal war between good and evil. On one side, Jupiter and his sons, Mars, Apollo, and Hercules. On the side of evil, Pluto and his minions. Only these minions aren’t cute and yellow and probably don’t like bananas. The way that it works is gods and goddesses still walk among us, but not all of them know who they are. The goal, of both sides, is to find the gods and goddesses before the other side does. Pluto wants to either kill them or turn them evil, while Jupiter wants to save them and bring them back to their glory. If the deity in disguise dies, then they are reincarnated, but each time it happens, they add on the trauma of that death and their memories slip a little bit further into their deepest unconscious.

And to add to all that, Jupiter and his sons own and run one law practice in Rome while Pluto runs another, and they are frequently legal adversaries as well, as what opens this book shows. Pluto has been trying to get off a truly vile man while Mars has been trying to get him put behind bars. Sadly, Pluto prevails at this point. (Boooooo, hissssss)

While this is going on in one part of Rome, outside the Coliseum, very British Vicky and her best friend Susan are having a girls’ vacation. Vicky loves to draw, sketch, paint, and create art, Susan tolerates her doing it, but get bored watching her do it. So, when Susan asks if Vicky is done drawing the Coliseum, Vicky says sure, and they go off to get pizza. One of my favorite kinds too, margherita. Across the crowded restaurant, Mars and Vicky catch each other’s eyes and the connection is sizzling.

Mars immediately disappears off to tell his dad that he thinks he found another goddess, and Jupiter tells him to become her friend. I love Mars’ interior dialogue at this point where he is saying that he’s the God of War, not the God of Making Friends. That was hilarious, if you ask me. But, Mars pops into where he senses Vicky and manages to save Susan from a couple of lechs by saying he was there for their 3some. Again, I laughed. Spoiler, there wasn’t a 3some.

There are a lot of really terrible things that go on in this book. This isn’t really a nice, light, and fluffy romance. This is gritty and dark and occasionally tortured romance. Poor Vicky has a seriously shitty time of it. Seriously shitty. OTOH, I think Vicky is pretty damn fierce from the very beginning, just to deal with everything, and only gets more so. I think that she’s definitely Mars’ match. I like Mars too. I think that he’s a little arrogant sometimes, but, you know, god. What are you supposed to do? I think he sometimes gets blinded by what he wants versus what needs to be done, but I can see why he got that way when he did. I can’t wait to see what these two talented ladies come up with next in the series.

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OMFG, what they do to poor Vicky. And not just once. I think Claire and Anna must’ve really hated her. Maybe they knew a Vicky who really pissed them off at some point because, damn. I mean, just damn.

I feel sorry for Bellona. I don’t excuse her actions, but I would probably have done the same thing in her place, but I still feel sorry for her. She was put in such a difficult place and loving someone more than they love you is always painful.

OK, that’s all for this one. Go check it out! Happy reading!

Sophie Kisker-Saved

It’s been a while since Sophie has been on the blog, but that’s OK, she’s Saved us with the newest book in the Nectar of the Gods series.

In case you don’t remember, Anterrin men are addicted to the nectar that is produced by human women when they are aroused and orgasm. Because of this, they have figured out a way to use portals to grab human women and bring them forward in time and space so that they can serve as nectar slaves. There are various levels of slaves, from ones who are in the dive bars all the way up to the most private and exclusive slaves who produce the most exotic nectar. There are also privately owned nectar slaves, as well as slaves who serve at the king’s pleasure. But, probably the human women are kept in common taverns where the Average Joe can come and sip straight from the source.

Abriela is one of the women who is kept in one of those common nectar houses. She has been there for nearly a year, and is trapped with several other human women, including one woman who has spent the last 5 days trapped in a cubby that has been completely shut, with no light at all and within a sound dampening field so she can’t even hear herself talk. On this particular morning, their evil master lets that poor woman out and tells her that she will have to be at work the next day, and then he lines up the women to be drugged with arousal enhancing drugs and tied up out in the main room so that the men can lick them raw for the next 8 hours. Abriela stops counting after 30 orgasms in a day. OK, orgasms are pretty damn nice, but 30 forced orgasms in 8 hours, day after day after day would get old and pretty painful too. I probably wouldn’t ever want to have an orgasm again after that. When one of the customers gets mad because she won’t keep her eyes on him while he’s using her, her master says he’ll punish her. When he does, Stella, the poor woman who had been trapped attacks him and he kills her. When Abriela sees that he killed her, she grabs the strap that her master was about to strap her pussy with and whips him across the face. Then he knocks her across the room and fades to black.

Meanwhile, across town, Kirin is an Anterrin male, and like all Anterrin males, he has a twin brother, named Damek. Kirin is a researcher trying to figure out how to deal with a terrible illness that children born to human women and Anterrin males get. It doesn’t affect all the children, but any child it does affect dies. He has a clinic full of human women that he’s studying and a director who is on his side. Damek works as an assistant to a governmental minister, basically a cabinet member to the king (who is kind of bugfuck). One day, Damek has to come pick Kirin up from work because his transport is busted. When Kirin opens the door to leave, he discovers a tiny, bloody human woman. Of course, it’s Abriela. He and Damek check her out, clean her up, hear her story, and decide that they are going to take her home with them.

While there is all kinds of naughtiness, happy sexy fun times, and spankings, this one gets more into the politics and the background of what’s going on with the Anterrins and humans and Earth at the moment. The King, who I might have mentioned is kind of bugfuck, is starting to decompensate. That’s never a good thing. I liked getting into all those politics and all that background and I found that it didn’t overwhelm the rest of the story with Abriela, Kirin, and Damek. In fact, the politics and such really added to it because there are a lot of choices that are getting made by a lot of people that affect our trio because of what His Majesty, King Bugfuck is doing.

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At least Earth, in some time period, is finally putting its foot down. It’s going to be interesting to see if the Anterrins try to retaliate, of course, the decision was made hundreds of years ago, so I don’t know if retaliating against Earth is going to do anything about it now.

I wonder how bad the war is going to be, if there’s a war. King Bugfuck sure seems like he wants to start a war or three. I wonder if he has a bad combover? I wonder if he’s going to get offed, because I think he really needs to, right soon now.

I think it’s about to get really scary, well more scary, for the human women stuck here now. It’s going to be much easier for them to get “lost” in the series.

OK, that’s all I have to say about this one. Go check out all the series. Happy reading!

Alta Hensley-Devils & Rye

Alta has some more top shelf booze for us to drink today. Today, we get to have Devils & Rye. This is the 4th book in the series and is just as good as the others. Harley Crow is still my favorite, because well, he’s awesome, but that doesn’t that this isn’t a great story. I enjoyed it a lot.

Alec is one of the founding and managing members of Spiked Roses, the premier gentlemen’s club of NOLA. He’s also a man who has run away from his past. There was a sneaky, nasty, gross secret society called the Iron Colt Brotherhood, that he walked away from because of what they did and what they stood for.

Alec’s best friend Rhett has a beautiful daughter named Makayla who is just shy of 21. After spending all her life locked up under her father’s thumb, he finally let her go to NOLA so that she could work at Spiked Roses. That would let Alec watch out for her. On Makayla’s very first day of work and what she thinks might be her new, normal life, Alec gets a letter from her father, begging him to take her away and hide her at their place, a house on the lake. She’s in danger, and Alec would know why. Rhett also sent a letter for him to give to Makayla so that she would know that she should do what Alec tells her to do. Of course, when Alec goes to give the letter to Makayla, she’s naked to the waist, with Tennessee trying to zip her into a red lace dress. That stops Alec in his tracks and makes him realize that little Makayla isn’t so little anymore.

OK, it’s that time. I’m going to go on and continue to drink this lovely glass of rye, you can choose which way you want to go. There are some very dark things that happen in this book. Not the darkest things I’ve ever read, but they are moving towards that way. I really do like the book, and I’m looking forward to more of the series.

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I have two words. Dildo. Bench. You’ll see.

I did kind of want to smack the crap out of Makayla because she went and made a supremely stupid choice right after Alec told her what was going on. I mean, who does that? I get loving your father, but she knew what was going to happen to her. As a parent, I would much prefer to see myself get hurt than to have my child in a position where something bad was definitely going to happen to them.

OK, that’s all I have to say about this. Go check out this one and all of Alta’s work. Happy reading!

Sara Fields-Mated to the Dragons

This is the 5th book in Sara Fields’ Captive Bride series. Her first 4 had young women who were connected in a way. Our heroine in this book is only connected by the fact that they were all sent to the same bridal training facility. I also think this one has some definitely darker aspects than the other books do. So, shall we talk about Mated to the Dragons?

If you’ve read the other books, you know that Earth is horribly overpopulated. Because of that, the families of Earth are limited to only two children. An illegal third child can be sent to an off-world colony or prison. Or, women can be sent to a bridal training center. The women who go to this facility are trained, spanked, and sold off to aliens as brides. Think mail order brides, only on a galactic scale, and a much, much kinkier version. There are menages, pet girls, spankings, butt plugs, and all sorts of other fun stuff.

However, that’s not strictly what happened for Jada. She has spent her entire life trying to be a good girl. She’s always done what her parents asked, paid attention, followed all the laws, and never broken any rules. She even got a job with the President. But, when she found out that he had broken the law to get elected? She knew that she had to do something about it. She took all her information and gave it to a reporter. When the reporter was killed, she was framed for the murder and falsely represented as a 3rd child. Jada was tried in secret and sent immediately off to the bridal training facility. Her parents don’t even know for sure where she is or what has happened to her. When she gets to the facility, instead of mixing with the other women, she’s isolated in her own room, all by herself. When the warden tells her that she’s found the perfect place for Jada, she can tell that the warden is glad to get rid of her.

Bruddis and Draego are brothers. They are also the princes of Draegira. Their father is dying because his body has recognized that is now more powerful men to lead their planet. But, they need to find a bride that they can share. They don’t have time to do all the usual stuff that goes along with finding a royal bride, so when they find out about this mail order bride training facility deal, they decide that they will buy a human bride. Enter Jada.

Jada’s introduction to her new planet is pretty hot and sexy. I mean, two guys at the same time while you are chained to a pole in front of the population of your new world? Yeah. But that’s only one hoop that Jada has to jump through before she may be able to marry her guys.

Alright. I love dragons. I love guys who turn into dragons. I mostly love Bruddis and Draego. There is one point that makes me really mad at them and I had to take a minute from wanting to go smack their snouts with a rolled up newspaper. Of course, that would lead to me being frozen, melted, or shot by Jada. What makes this the darkest of the books yet, at least for me, is some of the things that Jada has to deal with throughout the story. Not from Bruddis and Draego, but from outside forces.

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Oh man, they made me so mad when they didn’t believe her when she told them that she didn’t kill anyone. I was so frustrated. I mean, she’s supposed to trust them, but they won’t trust her there?

And the pearl scene after the wedding? OMFG. I always thought pearls were sexy, but that scene took it to a higher level. Jada is obviously a pain slut, too.

Alright, that’s all for this one. All the Captive Brides are in KU right now, I believe, so go read them all. Happy reading!

Anita Gray-Blai2e

Blaire is one of those books that everyone in my section of the dark romance reader community has read. When people ask for recommendations, Blaire always makes it onto that list. Anita kind of kept us hanging for number 2, but she’s not leaving us hanging anymore. Now we have Blai2e.

I’m not going to lie to you about this one. It pretty much devastated me in many places. I ugly cried for the last 20 minutes of the book. There’s just so much to it, and wow. I mean wow. Anita opened up a support/spoilers group for those of us who got to read it early, and there have been some discussions in there about this book. The points we discuss won’t be brought up in this review at any point, because I don’t want to leave any spoilers here, even behind the spoilers picture. You’ll just have to wait until you can read it and then you can join us there and join the conversation.

Talking about Blai2e will likely spoil parts of Blaire for you, so if you haven’t read the first one, go read it right now. Then read Blai2e. Then come back here and we can talk some more. I’m going to be nice here and put the rest of this post behind a jump, and then I’ll do like I usually do.

Continue reading “Anita Gray-Blai2e”

Maddie Taylor-The Renegades Reward

I love everything I have read that Maddie Taylor has written. I own several of her books, and I love the Primarian Mates series. Go check it out. But, The Renegades’ Reward isn’t part of that series, so let’s get on with that, shall we?

At almost 25, Daniella Alltryp has been sent by her father to Elzor. This planet full of blue people hasn’t been one of the places that she’s always wanted to see, but she’s spent her entire life until now isolated and she’s always wanted to travel, so she’ll take what she can get. She’s been staying with the royal family and has been wined and dined by them. She thinks it’s somewhat odd, but her father is rich, rich, rich, and very influential, so who knows. It isn’t until halfway through her trip that she finds out that she’s being considered as Prince Ivar’s bride. She definitely does not want to marry him, not one little bit. On her way to the spaceport to go home, a taxi driver clues her in and tells her that the royal men are having fertility issues and that the 4 brothers have had 10 wives between them and if the wives aren’t pregnant by the 1st anniversary, then they are offed. I mean, these guys make Henry VIII look positively sweet and cuddly. When she hears that, she’s absolutely positively positive that she wants nothing to do with Ivar. All she has to do is hang on until she turns 25 in a few days, get her trust, and be free of her father. What she didn’t count on was a big monkey wrench being tossed into her plans, and getting kidnapped by pirates.

Twin brothers Jaylin and Malik are Trilorian mercenaries. Dani’s father is holding their ship ransom. However, when he gets the ransom note for Dani, he calls Jaylin and says that he’ll sign their ship over to them and pay them if they will go rescue her. Since they are tired of dealing with Dani’s father and being stuck on Earth, they take up on his offer.

Malik is worried because he knows his older brother. Jaylin likes women, a lot. Dani looks like the kind of woman that Jaylin would like. The problem is that Jaylin and Malik’s wife died 5 years ago, and while Jaylin has moved on, Malik is mired in the grief and wants nothing to do with women. Trilorian men mate in pairs, so he’s also keeping Jaylin from finding out if there is another woman that he thinks will make a good third member of their triad. And then in walks Dani.

I think that this is a good place for us to break. If you like hot menage action, this is definitely the book for you. If you like intrigue and adventure, this is the book for you. If you like romance and love overcoming everything, then definitely the book for you. In other words, this is probably the book for you. It’s all about healing and finding love. Jaylin and Malik are really sweet to Dani, even before anything happens between the three of them. Jaylin is also devious, but only in the best ways and for the best of reasons.

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I do think it’s kind of bad of the brothers to keep going with the cyborg thing after it started with Jaylin making a joke at Malik’s expense. Dani thought so too, so I wasn’t wrong in that.

Dani’s father is a complete and utter asshole in so many different ways, but karma is also a bitch and she has something to say to Daniel Alltryp. In fact, she ends up saying quite a bit to him, and I applauded her for it.

I love the person who ends up helping out Jaylin and Malik. It’s a total surprise and a most welcome one.

See if you can find the bit towards the end that made me laugh out loud. I love easter eggs, and this was a really good one, so go Maddie!

I am all out of words to say about this that won’t completely spoil you, so check it out and see why I like it so much. Happy reading!