Jessie Cooke-Beck

Beck is the 7th book in Jessie’s Westside Skulls series, which is a spinoff of her Southside Skulls books, and which is spawning its own spinoff. It’s called the Phoenix Skulls, I think, I should go look, but if I get on my Kindle, I’ll end up involved in the book I’m reading, and I’ll never get back to blogging about this book. Damn books, always waiting to suck me in.

So, Beck is kind of unique to the MC books. While it does focus on the MC and on Jace, he isn’t the primary focus or even the primary voice. Beck is. Or more properly, Rebeckah. Yup, you read that right, she’s a woman. And she’s the one that the book is named after. And frankly, calling her a badass motherfucker is kind of insulting to Beck, because she can and will out badass the toughest badass. I mean, Chuck Norris calls her to help him when he can’t handle everything on his own, and he totally hero worships her. Beck is my kind of chick. She cusses, she loves sex and will go out and have sex whenever and with whoever she wants, and she’s just totally free and totally comfortable being who she is. I think that she is on my list of top heroines, because yeah. She’s fucking awesome. So, here’s how the story goes.

Beck was delivered on the side of the road by Coyote, of all people. Coyote, at the time, was the Prez of the Westside Skulls, the position which is now held by his son, Wolf. But there was a bond formed between Beck and Coyote. Each year, he sent her a letter and a gift for her birthday. She got to know him in a way that no one else really did. They talked about a lot of things, including the possibility of her patching into the MC after she proved herself. She really wanted to do that, because she thought of Coyote as kind of a surrogate father because hers died before she was ever born. She wanted to be like both of her fathers, a sailor in the Navy, and a member of the Westside Skulls. Not only did she want to be in the Navy, she wanted to be a SEAL, but the military, in its infinite wisdom, decided that women couldn’t be SEALs, so even though she could pass all the tests, and do it better than the men, because she was XX instead of XY, she couldn’t join. So now, after 17 years in the Navy, she’s totally done, and ready to move to the next part of her goal.

Jace has been a nomad going back and forth in between the Southside and the Westside Skulls. He’s also a famous bike guy. He makes custom bikes that are in high demand, and right now he’s out with the Westside guys so that he can customize a bike for a kid named Nate, who is 13, and who wants a bike just like his dad’s. One day, when he’s working on the bike, the bad guys come into the garage while he’s talking to Bruf, and they want to talk to Wolf. When it ends up as a gun battle, the guy who is trying to shoot Wolf ends up shot, but none of the guys did the deed. It was a woman who had just ridden in on her Harley, saw what was happening, and made a difficult shot to save Wolf. Jace is impressed and more than just a little turned on, but he figures that she will never be attracted to him. Right up until she is.

There are a lot of things that I really liked about this book. One of them is the chemistry and connection between Beck and Jace. From the very first time they have sex, Beck thinks that Jace is sexy, even though Jace doesn’t think so because he’s covered in nasty scars. Beck likes them because they make it look like he’s lived. Jace likes more than just her beauty. He likes the fact that she’s a total BAMF. And I mean, she is. She can outshoot, outfight, and outride any guy there. Like I said, fucking awesome. I really like that about Beck and about this book. While there are a lot of strong heroines out there, there aren’t a lot who are like Beck and who are as comfortable with themselves as she is. I am going to need so much more of her, K, Jessie?

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The list that the boys make up for Beck to go through is just ridiculous. I really do hope that Wolf put them all through the shooting test she had to go through, at the very least. I would, however, have loved to see the riding test between her and Bruf. That would have been pretty fucking awesome, I think. I mean, yeah, it sounds like some kind of dance.

I’m really looking forward to the next book in the Phoenix story. It sounds really interesting.

OK, that’s all for this one. If you like MCs and tough heroines, go check this one out. Happy reading!

K. Webster & Ker Dukey-Vas

Ker and KWeb have decided to help me out with the ABC challenge I’m doing on Goodreads this year by making sure I had a book that started with V by giving me Vas. Well, I guess they gave it to everyone, but I’m totally going to pretend that they were thinking only of me when they hit publish. Don’t harsh my mellow, OK?

Vas is the 3rd book in the V Games series, and features, oddly enough, Vas. The featured men in each of the books is from one of the First Families of the Russian mafiya. This one focuses on the scion of the Volkov family. Well, he’s sort of a member of the Volkovs. His old man is Volkov senior, but his mother was a maid in the household and Vas didn’t know who his father was until he was much older. He did spend time around Diana (Ven) and Irina (Vlad), his two half-sisters, growing up, and now that they are all adults, they are all close, especially Diana and Vas, because of the way he helped her.

Old man Volkov has pretty much claimed Vas, since he wants to have a male heir. Even though he raised Diana and Irina to be strong, powerful women and told them that they would be able to make their own choices in life, he fucked them over, and went with Vas instead.

Vas was an underground fighter, and now he has a serious reputation in the underground circles. No one wants to take him on. He now helps to train fighters for the V Games from different families. He also goes to visit his sisters regularly, especially Irina. Why does he visit Irina a lot? Well, that’s because Darya is there. Darya is a slave that Vasiliev the elder has. There’s just something about her that draws Vas to her. And it’s not even that she spends pretty much all her time naked. He’s obsessed with her, and he wants to get her out of there somehow. However, all of his plans to get her out and make her safe become suddenly irrelevant when it turns out that she’s Vlad’s sister.

Darya was raised in a religious orphanage and then spent time in a convent before the devil man came and took her away and gave her to Vasiliev, who she calls Molokh, a demon. When it comes out that she’s Vlad’s sister (probably), he swears that he will keep her safe from his terrible, monstrous father. When Vas tells Vas that he wants access to Darya, Vlad says sure, but he will have to train a fighter for him, Alyona Voskoboynikov, a young woman who is a member of the lesser of the First Families.

So, Vas, Darya, and Alyona all go off to Moscow so that Vas can train Alyona in a safe(ish) place, and so that Darya will be safe from Molokh. And thus we go into the story.

I have to admit that I didn’t like Vas when we first met him in Vlad. I thought that he was kinda creepy, but by Ven, he had really grown on me, and by his own book, I was so excited to see it come out. I was really excited to see what Ker and K would do with him. I was also looking forward to see what would come out of the actions of the last book and what would happen to Vika. I have to say, I’m perfectly happy with the resolution of both things. I don’t like Vika, I never really have, she’s scheming, grasping, narcissistic, and thinks she’s really smarter than she actually is. She wants to think that she’s Machiavelli, when in fact she’s more like Machia, no velli, at least I think so. I like Darya. I like her a whole lot. And I’ll forever be loyal to Diana, who is Queen, but I think that Darya may actually be the strongest of all the women in this series. She goes through hell, yanked from a safe(ish) place in the convent to being a sex slave who is abused, and yet, she never loses herself. If you ask me, that makes her pretty damn strong. I think that she and Vas are going to be a serious power couple in their world, plus with the connections they have to Vlad and Ven, I think the next generation of First Families is going to rule the world.

I don’t think this one is quite as dark as the other books are, Vas and Darya’s love story is a little sweeter. However, not quite as dark and a little sweeter doesn’t mean light and super sweet.

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I have to say, I didn’t quite expect what happened to Vika, but I do think that it will work well. Vas is a pretty good guy for being who he is.

I can’t wait to see what happens with our Moscow brothers. I think that they are going to be interesting, and I think that I’m pretty happy that they never laid a hand on Darya, because that would’ve been more than a little bit weird. I do like the guys though. I think they are pretty fantastic, and I’m glad that we are going to still see them.

OK, that’s all I have to say about this one. Go check it out, and make sure that you read the other two books in the series, otherwise you won’t get this one. Happy reading!

Eris Adderly-The Last Dominant

Eris Adderly is back with a new scifi romance for us, The Last Dominant. This is a sizzling hot enemies-to-lovers that takes an intergalactic war and turns in into something much more personal. So, let’s talk about it, shall we?

The planets of Imbria and Rhyolus have been at war, either hot or cold, for generations upon generations. They don’t trust each other and they spy on the other. So, when a Rhyolusian military unit was found at an Imbrian outpost, it’s a very not good thing.

Rushkah is a lieutenant who is being “interrogated” by an Imbrian general. For interrogated, read having a cold gun firing at her hand until it nearly freezes off. But then, a medic stops the torture-happy guy, who is, BTW, totes getting off on this, because Rushkah is a genetic match. Who or what is she a genetic match for?

Qillian is the Minister of Records for Imbria. He’s also their best chance at translating a dead language. And oh yeah, he is the last person in the entire world who has the Push. He’s a telekinetic of untold power, and has basically spent his entire life in a benevolent prison, because he is Imbria’s greatest weapon. For Qillian, the gene is dominant, and the Imbrians have been trying to find a genetic match for him for years, to try and breed more of his bloodline. That’s where Rushkah comes in. She carries the gene as a recessive, and the Imbrians want to breed her to Qillian to see if they can come up with babies. Neither one are very taken with the idea, but their hands are forced and they have to do it.

See, if I were Qillian, I would so totally have called their bluff. They need him a helluva lot more than he needs them, and I wouldn’t want my child brought up in the toxic environment that exists. I personally don’t trust the Imbrians at all, not at all, and I wouldn’t put it past the government to take the child away and make Qillian and Rushkah keep breeding. Then, who would those kids breed to so that the next next generation would be born? See what I’m saying? It’s totally creepy, if you ask me. And I honestly wouldn’t put it past the government. If they take the child/ren away, they can have the child/ren raised in the “family” they want it to be, and indoctrinated heavily. Like I said, I just don’t trust that government.

I really like both Rushkah and Qillian. They are definitely both strong characters and they both believe firmly in what they are doing. I think that they are perfect for each other. He needs someone who can and will stand up to him and not just roll over for him because he’s who he is. She needs someone who she can’t just run over and who can take control of her when needed. I think it’s perfect.

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I love when Rushkah shows up Qillian at what is supposed to be his specialty. LOL. And it took him so long to figure out that she had done it.

I’m really hoping that there is going to be more in this series, because it sure seems like Eris has set it up like there is going to be someplace to go.

So, that’s all I have to say about this one. I loved reading it, so go check it out! Happy reading!

Grace Goodwin-Ascension Saga 6, 7, & 8

Well, Grace is back with her teasing Ascension Saga, this time with books 6, 7, & 8. As a reminder, this saga is set in the Interstellar Bride universe, but it is slightly different to the IBP books. Instead of a human woman finding her ideal mate out among the stars, we are following the Aleran royal family and their fight to take back their planet.

Queen Celene had to leave her planet in a rush because of an attempted coup, when her mate and king consort was killed. The Aleran society is a matriarchal one, and the lineage is always through the females. Celene was pregnant at the time, and she managed to escape to a tiny backwater planet known as Earth, where she had her daughter, Trinity, and married a human man and had twins by him, Faith and Destiny. When Celene is kidnapped away from Earth, her three daughters, who have been raised to rule Alera, rush to Alera and put into place their plan to rescue their mom.

Books 1-3 are Trinity’s story, where we meet her mate Leo. Books 4-6 are Faith’s books, along with her mate Thor. Books 7-9 are Destiny’s books, and she meets her mate. Who he is, I’m not telling. You’ll just have to go read the books to find out. You know you wanna. Trinity’s story is out as a box set and Faith’s is either out now or will be shortly, if you would rather get them as a box set instead of serialized. The same will happen with Destiny’s books, when the last one comes out. Which can’t be soon enough for me, dammit.

Because of the serial nature of the books, it’s really hard to talk about what happens in one book to the next, because if I talk about each of the books, then it’s going to spoil, and you all know how much I hate to do that. So, since I can’t remember how I did it for the last two posts, and I’m too tired to go back and check today, since it’s been a very long day in a very long week, I’m just going to give some of my reactions.

In book 6, I still think Thor is an idiot. I’m pretty sure that I might have said that before, but he’s still an idiot. Faith though, Faith is downright lethal. I love the Miss Fisher Mysteries, and there is a line in one of the episodes about the right dress and fashion being dangerous and lethal. Faith made me think of that line in this book, which was totally fitting.

When we start focusing on Destiny, we learn a lot about her that we didn’t know before. Mostly because until know we’ve only seen her through her sisters’ eyes, so I’m really digging learning more about Destiny. She’s a straight-up badass motherfucker. She’s a warrior and a hunter, plain and simple. The man who takes her to mate is going to have to realize that and support her through that, no matter what he may want to do. Destiny is going to be one of those women who doesn’t want a shield, she wants a partner, someone who will respect her fighting side and be there with her during it.

I can’t wait for the last book in the series. Grace is being terribly mean to us, and I don’t know how I’ll ever last.

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I have a guess as to who the ultimate bad guy may be. It would be interesting if it was really the person that I think it was. I’m not going to say who I think it was. That way none of you will ever know if I’m right or not.

Nix is awesome, but awesomely stupid sometimes. I do like he and Destiny together though.

OK, that’s all for this one! Go check it out and happy reading!

Loki Renard & Jane Henry-Hard Time

Loki and Jane have gotten together again and co-written another great book. Hard Time is the sequel to their last book, and it was definitely worth the wait.

Rico is an FBI agent, and he’s bound and determined to bring down the Francoise family. They are up to no good, and he’s over it. He is also just slightly obsessed with Jasmine Francoise. She’s beautiful, talented, gorgeous, and definitely into whatever her family is doing right up to her pretty eyebrows. He follows her around and pulls her over in her fancy little car every chance he gets. He’s attracted to her, and he’d love to turn her over his knee and paddle her naughty ass.

Jasmine is controlled by her father and brother. She doesn’t want to do anything that they are making her do, but her dad will hurt her if she doesn’t do anything. She’s making her plans to get away, but it isn’t always easy. Her one bright spot is when she gets to see Rico. She wants him so much, but he’s law and she’s… not. But, when push comes to shove, Rico is there to help her.

I felt so sorry for Jasmine. She’s really just put into a horrible place with her father. He’s a fucking asshole. Just a fucking asshole. Her brother isn’t necessarily better, most of the time. But, even with me feeling sorry for her, I think that she’s stronger than she thought that she was. Rico is a good guy, I mean, yeah, he’s a cop, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are good people, if you know what I mean. But, he really is a good man, and all he wants to do is be Jasmine’s Daddy and to take care of his little girl. The chemistry between the two of them is pretty explosive.

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Remember how I said that her dad was a fucking asshole? Yeah, he’s even worse than that, but that’s OK, he gets everything he deserves.

I think we may be getting a story about her brother next and it will be an MM. I hope so. That will be so awesome.

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

Maddie Taylor-Claimed by the Warlord

Maddie Taylor writes some really great scifi romance, and in Claimed by the Warlord, she has done just that. It’s a fated mates kind of story and sort of an enemies to lovers story. Not that I would really ever call Aurelia and Darios enemies, but they sure as hell are lovers.

Aurelia is the High Princess of Aeldor. Her planet is cold and icy, and the people of her world are able to feel emotions and can manipulate ice to some extent or another. Because they can sense emotions by touch, the people of Aeldor have earned the reputation of being cool and aloof. Aurelia could almost be called an ice princess. She can only touch her twin brother without pain, and she has no suitors. She’s beloved by her people, but she’s never been moved by any man.

One cold day, she’s on the way to her Aunt Akira’s house, in the cold and frozen north when she gets captured by mercenaries. They have technology to counteract her freezing abilities. She gets knocked out and when she comes to, she finds herself naked in a cage, where she’s now waiting to be sold. She was supposed to be killed, as ordered by the person who hired the mercenaries, but they decided to get more money out of it by selling her as a slave. Along the way, the mercenaries decide to grab three women off the neighboring planet of Voltarre to make up their quota. They have new stolen tech which will let them do that without even having to set down on the planet.

Darios is the Overlord of Voltarre. One of the women taken was his very pregnant sister-in-law. He and his brother are in pursuit of the stolen women, especially as they have heard they might be sold as slaves. When they get to the ship where the slave auction is being held, they find their three stolen women, as well as many others. In a locked hold, which is on fire, they find one big surprise, High Princess Aurelia of Aeldor. The Voltarrens have powers too, they control fire and can sense the truth, which is good when Darios has to rush in and rescue Aurelia from the fire.

Aurelia and Darios sense a connection from the very beginning, not the least of which happens because they can both touch each other without bothering either one of them, which is incredibly rare.

I like Aurelia. She’s strong, stubborn, loving, caring, and loyal. She’s willing to stand up toe-to-toe with Darios about what she believes in. Of course, being stubborn isn’t always the best thing for her. She’ll learn. Darios is definitely all alpha male. He’s also strong, stubborn, and loyal, with a huge helping of protective as well. I love the connection between the two of them. They are very great together, even when they have misunderstandings between their cultures. I really hope that we get to see more of their world.

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I totally didn’t see the bad guy coming at all. I agreed with Darios as to who the bad guy probably was. But then, things changed, and boom. Different bad guy altogether.

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

Ava Sinclair-Daddy’s Brand

Ava have given us such an awesome present for the 12 days of Christmas. (Which spans from Christmas to Ephiany.) We are getting a Daddy and a cowboy, all wrapped up in one person. Yumm, right? Best Christmas present ever! Anyway, let’s talk about Daddy’s Brand.

Harley is a vet student. She wants to be a big animal vet, and working as an intern on a ranch will be the perfect addition to her resume as well as a way to start networking and building more experience. She’s spent time at summer camps and working at other places with large animals, but spending months on an actual working ranch that does everything the old fashioned way will be better than anything else she has ever done. So, when the Triple Bar accepts her application, she thinks she’s in like Flynn. But…

Royce has spent half of his life working at the Triple Bar and is now the foreman. He’s dedicated to his job and does everything he can to make sure that the ranch works the way that he should. So, when he finds out that his new intern Harley is a female instead of a male, he’s shocked. But, the fact remains that she is still the best candidate out there, and she’s bound and determined to do the job. Maybe a little too bound and determined. When the ranch manager wants to send her away, he goes to bat for her and makes sure that she stays so that she can do the work.

I like Harley, I really do. She’s strong, determined, talented, smart, and will stand up for what she knows is true. All that being said, there are a couple of things that I don’t particularly care for, and I think that they stem back to her father and the fact that she’s still fairly young. They are things that she could grow out of. Mostly, it’s the way that she is just sooooo bullheaded. I get being determined, and I get wanting to stand on your own and show that you don’t need any special treatment just because you are a woman. Trust me, I totally get it. But, you can go too far with it. I mean, as an example, Royce wanted to make sure that she had a private room in the bunkhouse, but she refused and said that she would sleep in the main bunkhouse. Having a separate room wouldn’t have been special treatment, not really. In places where men and women work together like in fire stations and such, they have separate sleeping areas. That’s not really special treatment, if you ask me. It gets to a point where arguing and being bullheaded just turns around and bites you in the ass, but generally that’s something that you learn as you get older. Even for as smart and dedicated as she is, Harley is still kinda in the young and stupid phase of life.

I think Royce is just an all around good guy. He’s steady, solid, dependable, and is going to be able to help out anyone necessary. He’s good for Harley in so many ways. And hey, hot cowboy is hot. I love the chemistry that they have together.

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I kind of guessed part of the end, but I was still satisfied with it because it was the way that it should be.

I love Mike and his little white lie. It was so sweet.

OK, that’s all I have to say today. Go hit King Zon and check it out. Happy reading!