Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Dark Skye (Immortals After Dark #14) by Kresley Cole

What it’s about


As a boy, Thronos, prince of Skye Hall, loved Lanthe, a mischievous Sorceri girl who made him question everything about his Vrekener clan. But when the two got caught in the middle of their families’ war, tragedy struck, leaving Thronos and Lanthe bitter enemies. Though centuries have passed, nothing can cool his seething need for the beautiful enchantress who scarred his body—and left an even deeper impression on his soul.


Lanthe, a once-formidable sorceress struggling to reclaim her gifts, searches for love and acceptance with all the wrong immortal suitors. But she’s never forgotten Thronos, the magnificent silver-eyed boy who protected her until she was ripped from the shelter of his arms. One harrowing night changed everything between them. Now he’s a notorious warlord with a blood vendetta against Lanthe, hunting her relentlessly.


With their families locked in conflict and battles raging all around them, will Thronos and Lanthe succumb to the brutal chaos that threatens everything they cherish? Or will the fragile bond they formed so long ago spark a passion strong enough to withstand even the darkest doubts?


Karla’s Review

5 Stunning Stars! After the disappointing MacReive, Kresley Cole is back on track with Dark Skye. This book is everything I love about the Immortals After Dark series!

Melanthe "Lanthe" and Thronos, childhood friends, torn apart by devastating events and misunderstanding, are together again after 500 years apart and their story is epic (Thronos' words).  I couldn't agree more! 

Kresley Cole is brilliant! I love the way she writes most of the books in this series on a concurrent timeline. In Dark Skye you find yourself back on the island where the creatures of the Lore have been held prisoner and tortured by the Order, including Lanthe and Thronos. When the books starts out they are making their escape, and Thronos intends to make Lanthe his prisoner and inflict his own special  brand of torture on her. The chase is on! 

What I enjoyed the most about Lanthe and Thronos, is that their story started centuries before when they found each other in the innocence of their youth. They formed a special bond and became best friends. Thronos knew back then that Lanthe was his mate, but even at that young age, they really loved each other. Unfortunately some tragic events took place, causing them both horrible pain and hurt. Their past was bittersweet. 

Throughout the book they find themselves in some pretty precarious situations, and fight together to escape as they're waging their own war with each other. In the course of all this, they  find new appreciation in each other, discover what really happened on that fateful day so many years ago, and fall in love all over again. It was funny, exciting, passionate, and filled with some sexy good times!  A few of the characters we've come to love make an appearance, most especially everyone's favorite...Nix! As always, she brings her own special brand of crazy wisdom and foresight to the situation...the Valkyrie is really losing it...she was a hoot!  

Kresely Cole's writing and storytelling is top-notch and Dark Skye is another bright shiny gem and one of my favorites in this amazing series! I can't wait to see how this all plays out as they draw closer and closer to the Accession! There are a few more characters I'm looking forward to reading about, but the one I'm anticipating the most, as well as most fans of this series are, is Nix and whoever she will be paired/mated with! I have to wonder if it's a character we are familiar with...I have one in mind...or will KC bring someone new onboard that can handle this crazy, loveable Valkyrie!   

*A copy of the book was provided by Gallery Books via NetGalley*

Connect with Kresley Cole
Website / Twitter / Facebook / Goodreads

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Sweet Surrender of Janet Buchanan Paula Quinn

What it’s about
New York Times bestselling author Paula Quinn continues her Highland Heirs series in this not-to-be missed novella.


Janet Buchanan is no man's property. She refuses to marry her family's sworn enemy-consequences be damned. She'd rather take a dagger to the brute herself. Yet when a tantalizing-and infuriating-man from her past comes to her rescue, Janet finds herself undeniably tempted by his hot, hungry kiss.


Notorious for his prowess as a lover and a fighter, Darach Grant has only one goal in mind: to defend his kin's land from the impending siege of a hostile clan. The last thing he needs is the delicious distraction of Janet Buchanan-the only woman who can stir his ire as deeply as she warms his blood. But Janet's intended will stop at nothing to claim her, forcing Darach to choose between surrendering his honor . . . or his heart.


Kathleen & Kristen’s Dual Review

What Worked
Kathleen says: Paula Quinn sure knows how to write a book with authentic  Scottish brogue, it REALLY added a lot to my overall enjoyment of this story.
The banter between Darach and Janet was fun to read.
I really liked that Darach was a poet and a song writer. He also said some very romantic things that made me fall in love with him.
The sensual chemistry between Darach and Janet, I could REALLY feel the attraction they had for each other.

Kristen says: Janet and Darach's story was a nice introduction and set-up for  this new series.
The witty banter between Janet and Darach. They had a love/hate relationship that was very amusing, and made it a fun read.
I also loved that this was about the third generation of the MacGregor and Grant clans from a series perspective, and I think it's fantastic that readers get to move on with this family. 

What Didn't  Work
Kathleen says: The ending was abrupt. I was expecting more, but the end came at 75% on my Kindle which threw me for a loop. I was NOT ready for it to end at that point, and thought there was going to be more.

Kristen says: A dramatic event towards the end of the book felt somewhat fabricated and wrapped up too quickly. This might have been necessary because of the book's length,  but  I wish the author would have considered giving this deserving couple a full length novel. Janet  and Darach's story didn't reach its full potential. 

Best Scene(s) and/or Quote(s)
Kathleen says: I really enjoyed the scene when Darach realized that Janet had been sleeping in his bed chamber after he had been gone from Ravenglade for a while. It was funny reading how Janet tried to explain the letters that Darach had found in his chamber that she had written about him.
Janet heard someone playing a lovely tune on the bagpipes only to find that it was Darach who was playing them.
There was a very dramatic event involving Janet at the end which really affected Darach. Then what he did after that was a very exciting part of the book!

Kristen says: When Janet realizes that Darach has returned to the castle and she needs to move back to her own room. It was a fun scene to read and I grinned the whole time.

I also loved this scene and banter between the two of them! 
“How d’ye know there are twenty-six Menzies in their camp,” she asked him. How could he possibly know for certain? “Or where their camp is exactly?”
 “I counted them.” He glanced up when their cook, Kevin, her cousin twice removed, entered the Great Hall. “Ye…” He wasn’t just an arrogant fool, but also a mad, arrogant fool.
“Ye counted them?” she asked him, almost speechless. She cast her gaze to Will.
“Aye,” Darach told her, “this mornin’ while they slept.”
He was mad… or utterly fearless and possibly able to get them out of this. “Why did ye not kill them all then?”
 “Because as skilled a fighter as I am, I canna’ kill twenty-six men at once. Really, Miss Buchanan, plans must be made before an attack.” He cast her brother an impatient look, then returned his gaze to her. “Ye will bring m’ plans to ruin if ye try anything foolish.”
 She wanted to shout at him that she didn’t care about his plans. It was her life to be sacrificed to a bleating goat. Was she supposed to entrust her life to a man she’d met all but two times, and both times, he was beaten to a bloody mess? He could barely defend himself, let alone her and a castle. She was afraid.

Favorite Character(s)
Kathleen says: My favorite character was Darach. I thought the fact that he was a poet, a song writer and could play musical instruments  was a refreshing character trait. Of course, he was also a fearsome warrior and always ready to defend and keep his loved ones safe. He was sexy, good in bed, and said some really romantic things which added to his overall appeal. In my eyes he was the perfect Highland hero.

Kristen says: Janet...she was feisty, strong-willed but yet vulnerable, the perfect blend for a heroine.
Darach...he was a full-fledged warrior with the heart of a poet.  At times it embarrassed him, but I loved his hard edges along with soft side. 

Overall Thoughts
Kathleen says: The Sweet Surrender of Janet Buchanon grabbed my attention from start to finish.  For a it had a pretty jam-packed story line. Even though Darach was my favorite character I also LIKED Janet too. She was smart, brave, strong and faced her fears head on. I could easily feel the attraction these two had for each other. Paula Quinn didn't disappoint with the heat level either. These scenes were spicy and written very well, just the way I like them. There were also a few action scenes that added excitement.

It’s been a while since I last read a book by Paula Quinn and  after reading this book I can honestly say that I’ve been missing out. I now feel the need to read more of her excellent Scottish romances.  ~  4 Stars!    

Kristen says: I really enjoyed this novella, it had a lot of depth , humor and characterization considering the length of the book.  However, I think Janet and Darach were a little short changed, they deserved to have their full story told, which in a way it was and sort of wasn't.  The book did focus on their relationship and not so much on what went on with the secondary characters, which I appreciated, but because I enjoyed these two so much I wanted more. Maybe a short epilogue would have done the trick and satisfied my need to know more....a little peek into the future. 

One thing I would recommend is that readers brush up on the past history of these families so you don't find yourself confused as to who is related to who. There is a family tree in the beginning of this book which you can reference and it's a great tool to refresh your memory, it certainly helped me.

Overall , The Sweet Surrender of Janet Buchanan  was delight to read and I am very much looking forward to jumping back into clan life with the Grants and MacGregors!  ~  3.5 Stars!

*A copy of the book was provided by the author and Grand Central Publishing via NetGalley*


Connect with Paula Quinn
Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads